The Redux Story Isn't Over

I'll leave the stuff that I wrote back when this drug was still being prescribed in the USA at the bottom of this page. In the meantime, the FDA has, as you probably know, reversed itself and pulled Redux from the market. But, the story does not end there.

Because of the stuff that I had posted here, and because this is a fat acceptance site, I was recently contacted by an attorney working on a class action settlement to compensate people that used Fen-Phen and Redux. I am, like many people, generally wary of lawyers, but this is undeniably a good cause. We need to send a message that rushing an unsafe product to market is not a good way to quick profits, just because it preys upon fat people.

 For further details on this case, you may contact Jim Ralston directly. Our correspondence is outlined below.

Correspondance With Jim Ralston

Message 1:

 There is a pending class settlement to compensate people that used the drug(s) known as "Fen-Phen" and "Redux".

 I am representing potential claimants regarding inclusion in the class action settlement and advocating their claim(s).

 I would like to inquire on the possibilty of listing my efforts on your website. As you realize this is a subject of importance and interest to the BBW community. I feel that this is a very just cause.

 I appreciate your consideration


 Jim Ralston

Message 2:

 I certainly consider this worthwhile. I like the idea of sending a message that unsafe weight loss techniques are not acceptable, and will begin to cost those who rush these things to market some money. Would it be OK for me to list your e-mail address as a point of contact for the Fen-Phen case?

 Athough advertisements in the newsgroups are strongly discouraged, I actually think that mentioning this in asbf or ssfa would also be very acceptable. I'll drop a message in there for you if you haven't already done this.

Joe Obrin

Message 3:


I appreciate your interest and your support in this matter. Like you, I feel strongly about this matter. Far to long various entities have capitalized on the obesity/weight loss area. There has to be a level of responsibility brought forth greater than what is displayed now.

 I have not yet placed a message within the newsgroups although I would appreciate any support that you can give my effort. In addition, to put my efforts into a non-commercial tone; I am willing to consult on a no cost basis to any individual that might be willing to file a claim on their own behalf.

 Again, thank you for your attention and your help. If you need further information please feel free to contact me.


 Jim Ralston,

Is Redux For You?

Here's a little quiz:

What if there was a drug whose side effects included permanent brain damage, pain in the extremities, diareha, loss of appetite, malnutrition, dehydratiion, and hypertension. Pretend that this drug has to be taken for the rest of your life in order to be effective, yet nobody has ever taken it for more than one year. What horrible condition would drive people to take this drug in spite of the risks--to literally line up at the pharmacy counters waiting for the FDA to approve the drug's sale?

The desire to fit into this year's bathing suit.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the FDA has approved Redux for sale in the USA. One more example of the opinion among the medical community in this country that losing weight is worth any cost to the health of the patient.

I can see it now. It's like a frightening shadow of a scene from an Abbot and Costello movie:

Doctor: I have some bad news, Mr. Jones. Your blood pressure is a lot higher than it was at your last visit.

Mr. Jones: That's strange. I never had any problem with my blood pressure until I started taking Redux. I hoped that it would help me to lose weight.

Doctor: I'm glad to hear that you are trying to lose weight. You know, being overweight can contribute to your high blood pressure. For some reason, yours is higher than it used to be. Have you been watching your calories and exercising?

Mr. Jones: Of course. Who hasn't tried that. But the weight never seems to stay off.

Doctor: Yes, it's hard to keep the weight off. Have you ever tried Redux?

Return to the fat page before it's too late!! 

In case you think I am nuts...

Yes, you have to take the drug for the rest of your life. Here is a medical study indicating that you will regain your weight when you stop taking it.

No one is pretending that this drug does not have side effects. Even relatively favorable articles such as this one admit the side effects of the drug, such as diarrhea and fatigue, but pretend that the benefits of losing weight (What are these benefits? What difference does it make if the weight is going to come back?) are worth it. Of course, they only mention pulmonary hypertension (PHT) in passing, even though this is a deadly condition. The FDA recenly made the manufacturer of Redux change their warning label regarding PHT, because the risk of contracting PHT (about a factor of 20 higher than normal after only 6 months on the drug) was four times what they had claimed. If you get PHT, your life expectancy is about 3 years. I know a lot of people who have survived being fat longer than that!

A slightly less favorable treatment of the drug's side effects can be found here. Even though this a resource for people trying to lose weight, they admit the hazards of this type of drug (with only a passing mention of PHT).

If you just can't stand being fat, at least don't try a remedy that's going to kill you. In fact, maybe you should consider the alternative to losing weight!