There is a lot of confusion about the approval status of many so-called "weight loss medications". I'd like to try to clear some of that up.
First of all, for the purposes of this discussion, the term "FDA-approved weight loss medication" means ONLY that
Notice that in the above description I have specified nothing about the details of how, how long, or under what clinical circumstances a drug should or should not be prescribed for the treatment of obesity, I am merely clarifying that the term "FDA-approved weight loss medication" means a drug that is specifically approved for treating obesity under SOME circumstances.
With that said, in March of the year 2012, this is a complete list of all FDA-approved weight loss drugs:
In the sub-pages to this topics I will describe each of these medications in more detail.