Dr. Anhalt talks about the effectiveness of Anti-obesity medication.
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Male Speaker 2: You can pick up a pill by prescription over the counter everything. The Russian pills that sold over the counter things like sacker. Are these really effective and should they be used? Are there any danger from these pills? Male Speaker 2: The over the counter industry, the over the counter pill industry is not as highly regulated as perhaps prescription medications. And the old dictum of no pain, no gain certainly applies to weight loss and lifestyle modification. Even prescription drugs, which are so carefully monitored have all demonstrated that in the absence of changing behavior, individuals who take these pills are likely to be successful for a short period of time, perhaps six months to a year and ultimately will regain the weight in the absence of making a change. So, I would suggest that people save their money and those pills, of course, can be quite expensive over the counter and invest in good multi disciplinary behavior modification programs such as the kids weight down program or the healthy life program here at St. Barnabas Medical Center. Male Speaker 1: Are there any real dangers with these things like sacker? Male Speaker 2: There is no question given the lack of regulation and perhaps consistency of the ingredients from product to product that there has been risk of damage and death in some previous over the counter pills that have high levels of a product called Fedrin. A Fedrin has been removed from many of the pills that are currently sold over the counter and replaced by with things like caffeine. However, Caffeine as we all know, which the forms the basic component in Coffee can cause excessive heart beat and raises blood pressure. Therefore, I would advise individuals stay away from these over the counter products and rather consult with their appropriate medical professionals to get the best treatment that can be afforded to them. Male Speaker 1: There are two prescription medicines that are still in the market. I think what's called Meridia and what's called Xenical. Do they have replacing pediatrics or even at young adults and where? Male Speaker 2: There have been two pivotal trials in the use of both Meridia and Xenical in adolescence. And they were both found to be effective in short term weight loss. However, I cannot stress enough that in the absence of changing behavior both of those medications will be less successful and ultimately will fail. It's quite clear that behavior modification is far more successful than either one of those drugs. Male Speaker 1: You see all the time a TV ads with these places like weight watches, what not. Can that be used in adolescence with some success? Male Speaker 2: There is one question that programs like weight watchers can be successful and they're based on the basic concept of behavior modification. What slacking in programs like weight watchers and Jenny Craig for example, it's the appropriate medical supervision. It's quite clear to us for example that many of our children that we evaluate for overweight have significant medical problems that would not have been detected had they not come for an appropriate medical screenings. For example, vitamin D deficiency is found in nearly 50% of the children that we see. High blood pressure, these are two very important complications that we see in overweight children. Sleep apnea, the difficulty in breathing at night requiring intervention. Abnormal liver tests suggesting abnormalities in the liver. So, programs like Jenny Craig and weight watchers certainly don't afford that appropriate kind of medical screening. They do rely on the patients themselves engaging in their own behavior modification by recording what they eat and that's an important step forward, but I think it lacks the comprehensiveness of the programs like the kids weight down program and they help you like program here at the St. Barnabas.