Clinics (Sao Paulo). 2017 May; 72(5): 317-324.

Copyright © 2017 CLINICS

Systematic review and meta-analysis of the efficacy and safety of amfepramone and mazindol as a monotherapy for the treatment of obese or overweight patients

Rosa Camila Lucchetta I * , Bruno Salgado Riveros I , Roberto Pontarolo I , Rosana Bento Radominski II , Michel Fleith Otuki III , Fernando Fernandez-Llimos IV , Cassyano Januário Correr I

Laboratório de Serviços Clínicos e Evidências em Saúde, Departamento de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Paraná (UFPR), Curitiba, PR, BR

Serviço de Endocrinologia e Metabolismo, Hospital de Clínicas, Universidade Federal do Paraná (UFPR), Curitiba, PR, BR

Departamento de Ciências Farmacêuticas, Universidade Estadual de Ponta Grossa, Ponta Grossa, PR, BR

Research Institute for Medicines (iMed.ULisboa), Department of Social Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal

*Corresponding author. E-mail:

received November 11, 2016; revised December 21, 2016; accepted February 14, 2017.


The aim of this study was to evaluate efficacy and safety of amfepramone, fenproporex and mazindol as a monotherapy for the treatment of obese or overweight patients. A systematic review of primary studies was conducted, followed by a direct meta-analysis (random effect) and mixed treatment comparison. Medline and other databases were searched. Heterogeneity was explored through I2 associated with a p-value. Of 739 identified publications, 25 were included in the meta-analysis. The global evaluation of Cochrane resulted in 19 studies with a high level of bias and six with unclear risk. Due to the lack of information in primary studies, direct meta-analyses were conducted only for amfepramone and mazindol. Compared to placebo, amfepramone resulted in higher weight loss in the short-term (<180 days; mean difference (MD) -1.281 kg; p<0.05; I2: 0.0%; p=0.379) and long-term (≥180 days; MD -6.518 kg; p<0.05; I2: 0.0%; p=0.719). Only studies with long-term follow up reported efficacy in terms of abdominal circumference and 5-10% weight reduction. These results corroborated the finding that the efficacy of amfepramone is greater than that of placebo. Treatment with mazindol showed greater short-term weight loss than that with placebo (MD -1.721 kg; p<0.05; I2: 0.9%; p=0.388). However, metabolic outcomes were poorly described, preventing a meta-analysis. A mixed treatment comparison corroborated the direct meta-analysis. Considering the high level of risk of bias and the absence of important published outcomes for anti-obesity therapy assessments, this study found that the evaluated drugs showed poor evidence of efficacy in the treatment of overweight and obese patients. Robust safety data were not identified to suggest changes in their regulatory status.

Keywords: Obesity, Weight loss, Treatment Outcome, Evidence-Based Practice

Articles from Clinics are provided here courtesy of
Hospital das Clínicas da Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo

2nd © Copyright 2007 - Revista Clinics - All rights reserved