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What Is Lorcaserin Used For?

You may consider using lorcaserin to help you lose weight if you are obese or have a weight-related medical problem like diabetes. This medicine is available by prescription only and is approved for use in adults. Lorcaserin is thought to work by activating certain chemicals in the brain, which helps people eat less and feel full faster.

An Overview of Uses for Lorcaserin

Lorcaserin (Belviq®) is a prescription medication approved for chronic (long-term) weight management, and is used in combination with a reduced-calorie diet and exercise. It is specifically designed for people who are:
  • Obese (defined as a body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or greater)
  • Overweight (defined as a BMI of 27 kg/m2 or greater) with at least one weight-related medical problem, such as:
(Click BMI Calculator to calculate your BMI.)
Obesity is a serious public health concern in the United States. Nearly one-third of adults in the United States are obese, and these numbers are increasing. In fact, the rates of obesity have more than doubled since 1960. Because obesity is becoming so widespread, many scientists consider the problem an epidemic.
Being overweight and obese increases the risk for developing a variety of health problems. Examples of health conditions associated with obesity include:
(Click on Health Effects of Obesity for more information about the link between obesity and these and other medical problems.)
Unfortunately, the obesity epidemic is not easy to manage. This is because being overweight or obese is a complex health problem influenced by a number of factors, including genetics, environment, culture, behavior, and medical conditions (see Causes of Obesity). All of these factors make it impossible to find a "one size fits all" answer.
There are numerous programs, diets, medications, and other treatments available for people who want to lose weight; however, many do not offer long-term success. Eating less is not enough. Experts agree that the best weight loss plan includes a healthy diet and regular physical activity.
When used as part of a total weight loss plan that includes a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity, lorcaserin may be able to help people lose weight and keep the weight off. Make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about a healthy diet and exercise plan when you start lorcaserin treatment.
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD
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