Obesity Drugs v.s Health Habits

Earlier this morning, Arena Pharmaceuticals announced that the Phase 3 trial results for their new obesity drug Lorcaserin met all efficacy and safety endpoints.

And yet, in just 2 1/2  hours of trading, their share price had dropped by over 32%.

But….they met all their efficacy and safety endpoints.

Why would the market punish a company for meeting all of their efficacy and safety endpoints?

I just don’t get it.

Based on Arena’s data, the average Lorcaserin patient:

  • started out at 219 lbs,
  • lost 12.7 lbs, and
  • ended up at 201.3 lbs.

In contrast, the placebo patient:

  • started out at 213.6 lb,
  • lost 4.7 lbs, and
  • ended up at 208.9 lbs

That means that over the course of 12 months, the Lorcaserin patient lost 8 more pounds than the patient taking the placebo.

8 lbs.

8 lbs over 12 months?

That’s it?

One of my new personal training clients is down 14 pounds in just under 7 weeks.

Another has lost just under 30 pounds since the new year.

Another has lost over 200 pounds over the past few years.


So, why would anyone want to take Lorcaserin?

For the side effects?


To be fair, Health Habits isn’t without side effects:

  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Lowered resting heart rate
  • Lowered appetite for sweets
  • Increased strength, endurance, flexibility, confidence, and
  • Inappropriate comments in the workplace


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  1. Um, that’s kind of a silly question. The Health Habits way probably requires exercise and some restraint in eating, no? That’s EFFORT!

  2. Exactly! People, especially Americans, want the quick and easy fix. If they can take a pill, regardless of side effects, and lose a small amount of weight, they will choose that over the ‘effort’ it takes to diet properly and exercise enough to lose a moderate to large amount of weight. It’s a state of mind that needs to be and CAN be changed around the world.

  3. I agree that many people want the easy way out and to be able to eat whatever, not exercise, and still have slim, fit looking bodies. I don’t believe this attitude is limited to American’s. Obesity rates are rising globally along with associated chronic disease.

  4. Dang. Used a possessive instead of a plural. That should have been “Americans”.

  5. Health Habits, my account on twitter was hacked and i believe someone was sending you false messages which is why you blocked me. At least I hope that is why. I have fixed my account and would really love to follow you again. I’m not on twitter a lot but i do have your tweets sent to my phone so i can keep up with your health and fitness tips.


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