Will FDA Approve Obesity Drug?

A panel of experts recommended the FDA approve Qnexa.
2:30 | 02/23/12

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Transcript for Will FDA Approve Obesity Drug?
That potentially game changing news in the fight against obesity. A panel of experts recommended that the Food and Drug Administration approve a new drug that has been shown to reduce weight by as much as 10%. It is new hope for the millions of obese Americans almost a third of all adults and 17%. Of children in this country are obese. Doctor Richard answers your break -- -- down forests and 72 million people could potentially be helped by this new drug how does that work. Well you know he he he he it's pretty incredible it's a combination of two drugs one is a stimulant drug which suppresses your appetite. The other is actually a seizure medication which has of the side effect weight loss put these two together and -- -- a 10% weight loss. Public have a look at this young man here is his name is Fraser heart -- he took the drug for a year and his we went from 390. Pounds. Down to 225. Pounds in just one year. The drug is called -- next up at two years ago the FDA. Refused to approve it saying it was too dangerous so what does change. Well you know when they first look at this two years ago the big focus was on does it do you lose weight and yes you do. But this time they look at what what are the side effects of obesity and -- -- the talking that diabetes heart disease. And they real -- between Weight Watchers and surgery there's very little to offer people. Who were not successful losing weight with just diet and exercise -- they said we need to do we need to provide -- drug is that people. So what with a side effects they lowered about two years ago -- had they gone now now I mean this is why they didn't approve the drug in the past things like increased heart rate palpitations. Kidney stones memory loss birth defects in these are really important side effects. Which -- the drug should only be used for people who are truly -- so it there it's not safer but -- -- -- to -- the side effects are worth it because -- -- become such an epidemic in this country -- -- that's right now the FDA has to decide are they gonna go along with this committee they have until April 17 -- attempted to do that. I think one of the big things we're gonna see -- restrictions to keep it away from pregnant women because of the birth defects to try -- limited to people who are truly obese. And then hopefully they're going to require a long term safety step. This is such a hard thing for the FDA to approve it's been ten years since we had a drug approved Phen -- was removed from the market and half of this drug had one of the ingredients offense that race right and we -- -- we didn't know about those problems until it was used in millions of people. For a long time so we gotta watch after this -- -- all right rich -- thanks so much in. And promising help for a lot of people I think -- here is okay great thanks so much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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