Do medicines work for weight loss? I am overweight and considering the use of medicines for managing weight.

Medicines are available to help with weight loss. There are five approved medicines and they work differently, and sometimes they are combined. They do produce weight loss, but not every medicine works for everyone. The side effects and the person’s underlying medical conditions must be considered. Generally, weight loss with medication is less than with surgery — about 10 percent of body weight is lost and can be difficult to keep off after stopping the medicine. Sometimes people must retake the medication when they regain the weight.
Managing weight is a lifelong effort and without modifying eating habits and physical activity, medicines do very little. This is also true of surgery, though surgery is more effective overall. The medicines used are generally safe and your medical provider will monitor you along the way to regulate side effects.
Anuj Malik, MD
Board Certified in Obesity Medicine
AbsoluteCARE Medical Center & Pharmacy
I’m transgender, but am not sure how do I get started on hormone therapy. Help?
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can have positive and important impacts on a transgender person’s quality of life. First, you need to make the decision that you’re truly ready to start your hormone therapy. (Once you start, some changes cannot be undone.) One question to ask is how HRT impact your life. If you decide that HRT is right for you, the next step is finding a healthcare provider (HCP) to prescribe your HRT and monitor your therapy. It’s important to find an HCP you feel comfortable with and one who has experience in prescribing HRT for gender transition.
After that, your HCP will perform a physical assessment prior to starting your HRT and may also request a mental-health assessment. HCPs have a responsibility to be sure you are making an informed decision and that you meet the physical and mental standards for eligibility and readiness for HRT. Following the mental-health assessment, the professional will then make recommendations to your provider. Your HCP will then do the physical exam, order baseline laboratory testing, and discuss the process of initiation of your HRT. Once complete, your HCP will make recommendations on dosages and frequency of your HRT and how you’ll be monitored during your transition. Ongoing care will include follow-up appointments with your HCP to monitor your hormone levels and the effectiveness of your therapy. You may also have followups by your mental-health provider, circumstances depending.
Remember, HRT is a lifelong commitment and requires monitoring to optimize your transition and overall health. Finding the appropriate HCP is an important first step to building a happier, healthier quality of life
for you!
Terry Hackworth, NP-C
Certified by the AAHIVM
AbsoluteCARE Medical Center & Pharmacy

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