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Expert Opin Drug Saf. 2009 Nov;8(6):727-44.

Orlistat: current status in clinical therapeutics.

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University of Mississippi, Department of Pharmacy Practice, Jackson, 39216, USA.



Obesity has rapidly become a life-threatening epidemic worldwide. There are a plethora of obesity-related co-morbidities and complications that increase morbidity, mortality and cost of care associated with obesity. Orlistat is approved for the treatment of obesity and has been evaluated both in obesity and in the several obesity-related co-morbidities.


The purpose of this article is to provide detail of the pharmacotherapeutic role of orlistat in obesity, describe orlistat and its pharmacological properties, critique the evidence for orlistat's use in obesity and obesity related co-morbidities, and define the role of orlistat in clinical practice.


A thorough, all-inclusive literature search was conducted to isolate clinical trials, case reports and meta-analyses evaluating the safety and efficacy of orlistat in various patient populations.


Orlistat's unique mechanism of action, beneficial effects on multiple co-morbidity surrogates and relatively mild adverse effect and drug interaction profile position it favorably as the first option for pharmacotherapy in comprehensive obesity management of adults and children.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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