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  • Generic Name: (orlistat)
    Other Brands: N/A
  • Last Revised: 08/2016
    • What is this medication and its most common uses?

      Xenical is a medicine used along with a low calorie diet to increase weight loss in people with obesity. Xenical is also used after weight loss to help keep the weight off.

    • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

      How does this medication work?

      Xenical works in your digestive tract to block some of the fat in the food you eat from being absorbed. The unabsorbed fat is then eliminated from the body in your bowel movements.

      What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

      What: In clinical studies, people treated with Xenical and a low-calorie diet achieved greater weight loss than people who were on a low-calorie diet alone.

      When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's instructions. It is important that you take Xenical exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.

      How do I know it is working?

      You may notice a decrease in your weight after you start taking Xenical. This is good indicator the medicine is working. Your healthcare provider may also ask you questions from time to time to assess how well Xenical is working.

    • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

      The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

      More common side effects may include: oily rectal discharge, passing gas with oily discharge, urgent need to have a bowel movement, oily or fatty stools, increased number of bowel movements, being unable to control your bowel movements.

      Less common side effects may include:

      Lowered absorption of certain vitamins in your body. Take a multivitamin containing vitamins A, D, E, K, and beta-carotene one time each day.

      Severe liver problems with symptoms such as loss of appetite, itchy skin, yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes, amber-colored urine, light-colored bowel movements, or pain in the upper right portion of your stomach.

      Kidney problems with symptoms such as swelling (especially of the legs and feet), little or no urine output, frequent or painful urination, blood in the urine, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, or severe pain in the back, belly, or groin. Your healthcare provider may do certain tests to check your kidney function during treatment.

      Gallbladder problems with symptoms such as pain in the upper right portion of your stomach, nausea, or vomiting.

    • Who should not take this medication?

      Do not take Xenical if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

      Do not take Xenical if you are pregnant.

      Do not take Xenical if you have chronic malabsorption syndrome (problems absorbing food).

      Do not take Xenical if you have gallbladder problems.

    • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

      Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Xenical. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have kidney, liver, or thyroid problems; an eating disorder (such as anorexia or bulimia); diabetes; seizures; abnormal heart rhythm; or human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

    • What is the usual dosage?

      The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

      Adults and children ≥12 years: The recommended dose is one capsule three times a day with each main meal containing fat.

    • How should I take this medication?

      Take Xenical exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not take change your dose without first talking to your healthcare provider.

      Take Xenical with your meals or up to 1 hour after your meal. If you miss a meal or have a meal without fat, you can skip your dose of Xenical.

      If you take a cyclosporine medicine, take Xenical and the cyclosporine medicine at least 3 hours apart.

      If you take a multivitamin, take it at least 2 hours before or after you take Xenical. Bedtime is a good time to take your multivitamin.

      If you take a levothyroxine medicine, take Xenical and the levothyroxine medicine at least 4 hours apart.

      Take Xenical with a nutritionally balanced, low-calorie diet that has no more than about 30% of calories from fat. Taking Xenical with any meal high in fat (more than 30% fat) may make the common side effects worse.

    • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

      Do not become pregnant while you are taking Xenical.

    • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

      If Xenical is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining Xenical with the following: amiodarone, antiretroviral medicines used to treat HIV, certain supplements (such as beta carotene or vitamin E), cyclosporine, levothyroxine, seizure medications, or warfarin.

    • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

      Do not take Xenical if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. The effects of Xenical during breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

    • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

      If you miss a dose of Xenical, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule at your next meal. Do not take two doses at once.

    • How should I store this medication?

      Store at room temperature. Keep the bottle tightly closed.

    • Who should I contact in case of emergency or overdose?
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      In the event of a medical emergency call your doctor or 9-1-1 immediately. In the event of overdose, call your doctor or poison control for further instructions.
      National Poison Control#: Call 1-800-222-1222

      This PDR+ drug information has been developed by the Physicians’ Desk Reference Network (PDRN), a source of medication information trusted by doctors for over 65 years.

      This monograph summarizes the most important information about your medication and does not cover all the information you may need. If you have any questions or concerns or want to learn more about your medication, ask your healthcare provider; he/she will be able to provide answers to your questions. This medication should only be used by the patient for whom it was prescribed and should not be shared with other people.
    • Additional patient resources.
      back to top Use your PDR® Pharmacy Discount Card when you or a family member fills a prescription and ask for your PDR® Discount every
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