What Is Generic Xenical Orlistat?
Generic Xenical® (orlistat) is a prescription weight loss medication. It is approved to help people lose weight and to prevent weight regain in people who have already lost weight.
Who Makes Xenical?
It is made by Roche Pharmaceuticals.
How Does It Work?
Generic Xenical Orlistat works by decreasing the absorption of fat from your diet. The stomach and intestine have enzymes, called lipases, that break down fat into smaller molecules which are then absorbed from your digestive tract. Xenical binds to lipases and inhibits their activity, helping to decrease fat absorption. The medication does not have any effect on carbohydrates or protein.
Effects of Generic Xenical Orlistat
Studies have shown that Generic Xenical Orlistat helps people lose weight. After six months of taking the drug while dieting, people lost an average of 12.4 pounds (compared to just 6.2 pounds for people who were just dieting). After a year, those taking it while dieting had lost a total of 13.4 pounds, on average (compared to 5.8 pounds for those just dieting). In addition, those taking it for a year experienced decreases in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol ("bad" cholesterol), blood sugar, and blood pressure, while those not taking it increased all these factors.
In studies of Generic Xenical Orlistat in people with type 2 diabetes, the drug improved several measures of diabetes control, such as fasting glucose and hemoglobin A1c, and many people were able to reduce or discontinue their diabetes medications. Studies have also shown that the drug can help prevent type 2 diabetes in people with obesity.
Generic Xenical Orlistat has also been studied as an aid to help people who have already lost weight keep the weight off. In one study, 52 percent of people not taking it regained the weight they had lost, compared to just 26 percent of people who took the drug.
When and How to Take Generic Xenical Orlistat
General considerations for when and how to take this medication include the following:
It comes in capsule form. It is taken by mouth with each fat-containing meal, up to three times per day.
If you miss a meal, or if you have a meal without any fat, you should skip the dose of Xenical.
The medication should be combined with a reduced-calorie, low-fat diet. Eating too much fat increases the risk of side effects. In general, you should try to limit your fat intake to less than 30 percent of your total daily calories.
For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed.
There is only one recommended dose, regardless of your age, weight, or other medications or medical conditions.
As with any medicine, side effects are possible. However, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
Common side effects include, but are not limited to:
Oily spotting (uncontrolled anal seepage of oil)
Abdominal pain (stomach pain)
Urgent need to have a bowel movement
Gas with discharge (of either oil or stool).
Drug Interactions With Generic Xenical Orlistat
generic Xenical Orlistat can interact with a number of other medications (see Xenical Drug Interactions).
What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?
You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking this medication if you have:
A thyroid disorder
Had an organ transplant
A medical problem that decreases your ability to absorb food
Had kidney stones in the past
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Xenical and Pregnancy)
Breastfeeding (see Xenical and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
What If I Take an Overdose?
It is not known what exactly to expect from an overdose, other than the usual side effects (which might occur more severely). If you happen to overdose on Xenical, seek immediate medical attention.
How Should Generic Xenical Orlistat Be Stored?
It should be stored at room temperature, away from moisture and heat. Keep the capsules in an airtight container.
Keep Generic Xenical Orlistat and all other medications out of the reach of children.
What Should I Do If I Miss a Dose?
If you do not take your Xenical as scheduled, take the missed dose if it is within one hour of the meal during which you missed the dose. If it is an hour or more later, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular schedule. Do not take a double dose.
Generic Xenical comes in one strength -- Generic Xenical 120 mg capsules.
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