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Strattera (atomoxetine) causes women to lose 7.9 lbs in three months
Tuesday, March 28, 2006 2:16 am Email this article
Obese women on a modestly reduced diet and given the drug Strattera (atomoxetine) lost 7.9 pounds in three months compared to 0.2 pounds for those given a placebo according to a study conducted at Duke University Medical Centre in Durham, North Carolina, USA. Weight loss
Weight reduced from 210 to 201
The average body weight of the women in the Strattera group was reduced from 210 pounds to 201 pounds. (The exact amount of weight loss was 7.9 pounds.)
Weight loss had peaked after two months
According to a graph shown in the paper (Figure 1) it appears that maximum weight loss was acheived after two months and no further weight loss occurred during the third month.
What is Strattera?
Strattera (atomoxetine) is a potent noradrenaline uptake inhibitor used for ADHD
Strattera (atomoxetine) is a “potent central norepinephrine uptake inhibitor, currently marketed for treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)” according to the paper.
Subjects: 30 obese women
The study involved 30 obese women with an average body mass index (BMI) of 36.
The average age was 35-years-old.
The women were randomly divided into two groups: 15 were given Strattera (atomoxetine), and 15 were given a placebo.
Diet: Reduced by 500 calories per day
All of the women were advised to reduce their calorie intake by 500 calories below their needs.
Dose of Strattera: Started with 25 mg, increased to 100 mg per day
Women were started on 25 mg of Strattera (atomoxetine) per day which was gradually increased to 100 mg per day over one week.
Side effects included upper respiratory infection, dry mouth, rapid heart beat, fatigue
Side effects included
- nausea and vomiting in 20 percent of the women (3 of 15)
- upper respiratory infection in 20 percent of the women (3 of 15)
- dry mouth in 20 percent of the women (3 of 15)
- rapid heart beat in 13 percent of the women (2 of 15)
- fatigue in 13 percent of the women (2 of 15)
- sweating in 7 percent of the women (1 of 15)
Antidepressant effect in one women
Strattera (atomoxetine) had an antidepressant effect in one women.
No effect on blood sugar, lipids, heart rate or blood pressure
Strattera (atomoxetine) had no effect on blood sugar, blood lipids, heart rate or blood pressure.
Comments about noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors
Comment: I prefer drugs that release noradrenaline to those that block reuptake
I am not a big fan of noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors such as this drug.
This is not the way the body normally works.
The body normally releases noradrenaline when more is needed. It does not block it’s reuptake.
Noradrenaline reuptake is the major source of noradrenaline stores in the body according to Goodman and Gilman’s Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics.
Comment: Strattera may cause adrenal glands to shrink
I spoke to someone who told me that had taken the antidepressant Elavil (amitriptyline) for over 20 years and then switched to another antidepressant because Elavil caused fatigue.
They said that they went through an extremely rough period for five or six months during which time they felt tired, depressed and exhausted.
I found in the research that Elavil (amitriptyline) given chronically to rodents causes their adrenal glands to shrink.
One of the mechanisms of action of tricyclic antidepressants such as Elavil is to inhibit noradrenaline reuptake.
Comment: I believe all noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors cause adrenal glands to shrink
I believe that this shrinking of the adrenal glands is probably true of all noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors such as Meridia (sibutramine), Strattera (atomoxetine), Edronax (reboxetine), Vivalan (viloxazine), Ludiomil (Maprotiline), Cymbalta (Duloxetine), Effexor (venlafaxine) and others.
The reason this occurs is that blocking noradrenaline reuptake causes a negative feedback loop telling the brain that there is enough noradrenaline, which then tells the adrenal glands that they do not need to produce any more for the time being.
Comment: Adrenals shrink due to lack of use
The adrenal glands shrink from lack of work in the same way that muscles shrink due to lack of use.
Comment: Atrophy just like with steroids
This is exactly the same reason that steroids cause the testicals to shrink. Steroids are synthetic testosterone which stimulate testosterone receptors. They create a negative feedback loop which signals to the brain that there is enough testosterone, and the brain tells the testicals to stop producing testosterone for the time being. The testicals then shrink (atrophy) due to lack of use.
Comments about noradrenaline releasing drugs
Comment: I prefer drugs that release noradrenaline
I much prefer drugs that stimulate the release of noradrenaline, such as ephedrine and caffeine, or phentermine, to drugs that block noradrenaline reuptake.
The body knows exactly how to handle noradrenaline release. This is exactly the way the body has been working for millions of years.
I believe it is much better to enhance a natural process in the body as opposed to doing something that is unnatural such as blocking noradrenaline reuptake.
Gadde KM, Yonish G, Wagner HR, Foust MS, Allison DB. Atomoxetine for weight reduction in obese women: a preliminary randomised controlled trial. Int J Obes (Lond). 2006 Jan 17.
Dr K. M. Gadde
Obesity Clinical Trials Programme
Duke University Medical Centre
Durham, NC 27710, USA
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