DALLAS—Oyuky Catano has fought the good fight for years--she's gained and lost weight and has tried over the counter and prescription weight loss medications.
"I wasn't happy with my weight and I wanted to be slimmer," Oyuke said. "I mean that was my main goal." She found a diet pill that worked and she's lost about 40-pounds.
The FDA panel recommended approval of Contrave after twice this year failing to endorse two weight-loss drugs because of potential health risks.
Forest Park Medical Center weight loss expert Dr. Anthony O' Connell said Contrave is the combination of two drugs. FDA officials believe Contrave's benefits outweigh the risks.
Dr. O' Connell said the combination works--enough.
"This particular combination is used for addiction as well as depression and its effectiveness in treating obesity is modest but is has minimal side effects and it's somewhat effective."
FDA found Contrave to side effects, including high blood pressure, dizziness and insomnia. Patients taking the drug reported losing 4.2% more weight than patients taking a placebo.
Dr. O' Connell said that that's not much but for many it's enough to potentially tip the scales in their favor.
"For a lot of people it gives them that go-between where they are able to have something to use other than over the counter product which is not run through the FDA," Dr. O'Connell said.
Oyuky has tried weight-loss pills that have had minor side effects--including headaches--but she's now making progress--something that she said she couldn't do without a little help from her diet bills
"I've tried exercise," Oyuky said. "I've tried as I mentioned previous diets and it just wasn't working for me."
The FDA is expected to make its final ruling by the end of January.