Phentermine, also known as phentermine hydrochloride or phentermine HCL, is an effective anorectic (appetite suppressant). Phentermine HCL is the active ingredient found in all phentermine tablets and capsules.
Phentermine was approved by the FDA in 1959 as an appetite suppressant medication for the short-term management of obesity, and is now one of the most widely-prescribed weight-loss medication in the US.
Phentermine is the active ingredient in several brands of weight-loss medications, including Adipex, Ionamin and Duromine, and generic versions of phentermine are also available. Phentermine is a controlled substance in the USA and classed as a Schedule IV drug under the Controlled Substances Act. Phentermine is structurally similar to, but not the same as, amphetamine. Phentermine is intended to act as a weight loss aid for overweight individuals, and particularly those who have tried and failed to lose weight using other methods.
It is recommended that phentermine only be used in the short term, and is generally prescribed by doctors for a period of 12 weeks - although this does vary in the US depending on the state. Doctors will also emphasize the need for patients to learn new lifestyle habits while taking phentermine. Patients normally find that the appetite suppression and additional energy they get from phentermine makes these life adjustments easier to accomplish. Once they stop taking phentermine it is recommended that patients continue their new eating and exercise habits to maintain their weight loss.
Phentermine is recognized as safe and is normally well-tolerated, but like all drugs, there are possible side effects.