Weight Management

Long-Term Weight Loss Associated With Pharmacotherapy, Lifestyle Interventions

Individuals with overweight or obesity had an average weight loss of 10.6% over 3 to 5 years when managed with anti-obesity medications, according to a new study presented at ENDO 2022, the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting.

To determine the connection between anti-obesity medications and weight loss management, the researchers performed a retrospective observational study of adults aged 18 to 75 years. For the study, 428 patients were observed and treated for obesity or overweight at a weight management center between April 2014 and April 2016.

A start and end date for the use of US Food and Drug Administration–approved and off-label anti-obesity medication was determined through chart review. The total exposure to each medication was measured through the patients’ self-reports. The most common anti-obesity medications used were metformin (76.2%), phentermine (31.1%), topiramate (30.8%), bupropion (29.9%), and semaglutide (24.5%).

The researchers followed the patients for a mean 4.4 years. The median initial BMI was 34.3 kg/m2. The patients were organized into 4 weight categories: overweight (19%), class 1 obesity (35%), class 2 (25%), and class 3 (20%). The researchers defined weight regain as greater than 3% of the nadir weight when analyzing the data. Analysis showed that the median time to achieving nadir weight was 1.9 years with an average weight change of 10.6% (-10.9 kg) from the first visit.  

“This study demonstrates clinically significant long-term weight loss maintenance can be achieved with pharmacotherapy and lifestyle interventions,” the researchers concluded.


—Jessica Ganga


Weintraub M, Andre C, D’Angelo D, Tchang B, Aronne L, Shukla A. Long-term weight loss maintenance with obesity pharmacotherapy: a 5-year retrospective study. Paper presented at: ENDO 2022; June 11-14, 2022; Atlanta, GA. Accessed June 27, 2022. doi:10.1002/osp4.575