What is it used for?
Orlistat is used to help overweight people to lose weight and reduce the weight gain while eating a reduced-calorie diet. Orlistat reduces the amount of fat that is absorbed from your diet.
What should my health professional know before I take this medicine?
Please do tell your physician if you have any of the following conditions:
- an eating disorder, such as anorexia or bulimia
- problems absorbing food (chronic malabsorption)
- gallbladder problems or gallstones
- if you are taking any other weight-loss medications
- an unusual or allergic reaction to orlistat, other medicines, foods, dyes, supplements or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How is this medicine should be taken?
Orlistat should be taken orally and swallowed accompanied with a drink of water or other liquid. You can take orlistat with each main meal that contains about 30% of the calories from fat. Or you can take the capsule one hour after the meal. You should never take this medicine more often than prescribed. If you occasionally miss a meal or have a fat-free meal, you can omit that orlistat dose. Doses greater than 120 mg three times per day have not been shown to proportionally increase the weight loss.
You should use orlistat with a reduced-calorie diet that contains no more than about 30% of the calories from fat. Divide your daily fat consumption, carbohydrates, and protein equally in your 3 main meals. You should try to follow a healthy eating pattern as prescribed by your doctor such as the one developed by the American Heart Association. Following this eating pattern can help you to reduce the possible GI side effects from orlistat.
Inquire with your pediatrician or health care professional regarding the use of this medicine by children. Special care might be necessary.
Overdosage: If you suspect an overdosage, get in touch with the nearest poison control center or emergency room immediately.
NOTE: This medicine is only intended for your use. You should never share it with the others.
What to do if I missed a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it within one hour after the fat-containing meal. If the time has almost come for the next dose, only that one should be taken. You should never take double or extra doses; a single doze is sufficient for the purposes.
Whatmay interact with this medicine?
- Dietary supplements, such as beta-carotene and vitamins A, D, E, and K
- drugs used to treat diabetes
Tell your prescriber or other health care professional about all other medicines you are taking including non-prescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also, tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke or if you use illegal drugs. Some of those items may also interact with your medicine, causing undesired consequenses. Make sure you have consulted with your doctor prior to stopping or starting any of your medications.
What should I watch for while taking this medicine?
Since orlistat can cause decreased absorption of some fat-soluble vitamins, you may need to take a daily multivitamin dose that contains normal amounts of vitamins D, E, K and beta-carotene. Take the multivitamin once per day at least 2 hours after your dose of orlistat unless other is directed by your physician or healthcare professional.
Watch for any unusual changes in your body's normal functions. You need to watch the amount of fat in your diet. Too much dietary fat can increase orlistat side effects. Also, watch for any changes in your eyesight, skin or hair that may be caused by vitamin deficiency.
Does this medicine have any possible side effects?
The side effects experienced when taking orlistat are related to the reduced absorption of fat from your diet. Gastrointestinal (GI) side effects may last for less than one week, but they might be occurring for up to 6 months or longer. Maintaining an appropriate diet can help to decrease side effects. The use of orlistat for over 2 years has not been studied yet.
The following side effects should be reported to your doctor or health care professional as soon as they are noticed:
- arthritis or joint pain/tenderness
- back pain
- rash, itching, or shortness of breath
- severe stomach pain
- yellow color appearing in your skin or the whites of your eyes
- weakness or fainting
The side effects listed below usually do not necessarily require any medical attention (please do report them to your physician if they are recurrent or bothersome):
- stomach discomfort
- increased number of bowel movements
- loss of control of bowel movements
- urgent need to go to the bathroom
- gas with release of stool
- oily/fatty stools
- oily discharge
- clear, orange or brown colored bowel movements
Other side effects are also possible, the above list is not all inclusive.
Where should I store it?
Keep out of the children’s reach in a container that cat not be opened by them.
Storage at 25° C (77° F) is preferred. You may store it at 15° to 30°C (59° to 86° F). Keep away from moisture. Keep container tightly closed.Dispose of any unused medicine after the expiry date is reached.