Orlistat Generic (Xenical)
Orlistat generic is an inhibitor of gastrointestinal lipases. Briefly speaking, this is a weight loss medication, which blocks the activity of lipases in your stomach and stimulates digestion and absorption of fats. This drug is usually used by people who suffer from obesity and have a body mass index above 30. The disease gets cured by combining Orlistat with a low-calorie diet and regular exercise. Sometimes the remedy can also be taken in order to keep the weight you lost off for the long term.
Release form of Orlistat and the method of its application
Orlistat is produced in the form of pills and can be found in two dosages of 60 and 120 mg. Depending on the planned duration of admission, you can purchase a pack of 84, 168 or 252 tablets.
You should take one tablet before or during the meal, but not later than an hour after it. It is not recommended to take more than 3 pills a day. If you missed a meal or did not include any fat in it, then acceptance of the preparation can be skipped. The duration of the course should not exceed 6 months.
Main adverse effects of the Xenical
Taking Orlistat might cause certain unpleasant symptoms, the most apparent of which are:
- Frequent bowel movements;
- Uncontrollable urge to defecate;
- Fecal incontinence;
- Oily or greasy stools.
In case of an overdose, the above-mentioned symptoms may intensify or even combine with each other.
Pharmacists believe that the reason for the appearance of listed side effects is an improper dosage of the drug and high content of fat in the food that you consume. This is why they recommend a three-fold reduction in fat in your diet at the time of treatment.
Who should be especially careful when using Orlistat?
Orlistat can be harmful to children aged 0-12 years, as well as patients of advanced age (above 65).
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not take this medication, too. Not only is not there enough research about the potential harm of this remedy for the embryo, but pregnancy is also a process that must not be combined with intensive weight loss and physical exertion.
Patients, who suffer from any of the following diseases, should discuss the intake of the drug with their healthcare provider:
- Malabsorption syndrome;
- Anorexia and bulimia;
- Oxalate nephropathy;
- Renal insufficiency;
- Allergy to the active component (orlistat).
This weight loss drug should not be combined with remedies, such as anticoagulants, ritonavir, cyclosporine, levothyroxine and HIV drugs.
What is the average price of Orlistat?
Orlistat is a pretty inexpensive drug. One pill of this remedy costs anywhere from $0.7 to $1. The exact price depends on the size of the package that you’re purchasing and the medication dosage. Thus, a pack of two-hundred and fifty-two 60 mg tablets costs an average of $170, whereas eighty-four 120 mg pills can be found for about $80.
Is Orlistat better than Xenical and Alli?
Xenical and Alli are brand-named weight loss drugs, while Orlistat is their generic version. The main active component of all the three preparations is orlistat, so their effectiveness is absolutely equal. The pills themselves also look the same, having a thin and elongated cylindrical shape and a turquoise blue color.
The first difference between these drugs is their dosage – Alli comes in 60 mg of the active substance, whereas the only available dosage of Xenical is 120 mg. Orlistat, however, combines these two factors and can be bought in both 60 and 120 mg dosages.
The only difference that we could find is referred to the packaging type: Alli is sold in white plastic jars, while Xenical and Orlistat can be purchased only in blisters.
In summary, the reviewed remedy is not inferior to its brand-name rivals. What’s more – Orlistat is the least expensive option because of its absence of patent and a pretty recent arrival on the market.
How safe is this preparation?
In 2009, drug patent holders started receiving frequent complaints about Orlistat. Patients were stating that the taking of these tablets led to them experiencing severe adverse hepatic reactions. However, an official Europe-wide review has proved that none of these cases could refer to the consumption of Orlistat. There are some possible side effects related to the liver, and all of them are listed on the package. Anyway, they are not as serious as the ones described in the received complaints.
With the exception of this case, there were no serious accidents connected with the taking of this medication. Actually, Orlistat can be considered highly safe, as all it does is helps the body absorb less fat from consumed food. What’s more – it gets excreted from the body in just 72 hours.
Effectiveness of Orlistat
There was a recent study, the purpose of which was to identify how effective the reviewed drug is.
539 teenagers, suffering from obesity and aged 12-16 years old, took part in a 54-week experiment, during which one part of the participants was taking placebo, while the rest of them were being given Orlistat. In addition, all teenagers were sticking to the same low-fat diet and doing a proportionate amount of exercise.
The results showed that those, who were taking the actual remedy, did the job better, having got their Body Mass Index (BMI) decreased by an average of 0.55 kg/m², which is 1.78 times bigger than 0.31 kg/m² – an average result of the group of teenagers taking placebo.
Basically, Orlistat is quite an effective drug. If you thoroughly follow all the instructions during its reception, get your proper dosage calculated by a qualified doctor, follow a low-fat diet and do some exercise regularly, then this medication will greatly help on your way to getting rid of obesity and maintaining a healthy weight.