Following the recall of Fen-Phen and Redux in 1999 (two diet drugs that cause heart valve diseases) Meridia was released. Meridia is a diet drug similar to the ones that were recalled. Like the recalled drugs, it releases serotonin into the brain to trick the patient's body into feeling full and choosing to eat less. These drugs do not so much remove weight from the body as they do encourage and facilitate a lifestyle involving lower caloric intake.
Meridia is different from the older drugs, however, because its interaction with the brain is more localized. While Fen-Phen released serotonin into the bloodstream where it flooded and damaged the heart, Meridia acts only on localized areas of the brain where the serotonin chemical is needed. People taking Meridia or considering Meridia should be aware that Meridia is part of a healthy lifestyle choice, not merely an easy road to diet street.
More serious side effects could be suffered by patients who are taking drugs called monoamine oxidase inhibitors, or MAOI's. MOAI's are taken to treat depression, Parkinson's disease, and other such disorders. Serious, sometimes fatal, reactions can occur if Meridia and monoamine oxidase inhibitors are taken at the same time. It is also important not to take Meridian along with other serotonin-regulating drugs. This can cause a rare but serious condition called "serotonin syndrome", which requires immediate medical attention.
Meridia does seem, after all, to be safer than Fen-Phen and Redux, but please be careful and remember that drugs like this are powerful medications, not aesthetic vanities. If you feel that you have suffered adverse effects from Meridia or that it has been administered improperly, please contact a lawyer right away.
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