An important study has found promising results for the safety of a weight loss drug in the US.
The study published in the New England Journal of Medicine says that adults who use the drug Lorcaserin lost an average of 4 kg (8.8lb) over 40 months.
It says the drug that works by suppressing appetite does not put people at greater risk of heart problems.
But experts emphasize the importance of long-term lifestyle changes when they effectively achieve weight loss
Lorcaserine has been available in the US for several years under the name Belviq, but it still needs to be approved for use in Europe.
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The study 1
After 40 months, the patients prescribed lorcaserin had lost 5-10% of their body weight three times more frequently than patients who received placebo. Erin Bohula, one of the lead authors of the study  Tests for heart valve damage showed no significant differences compared to placebo. This has been a major concern with the safety of other slimming pills.
Patients who used the drug also had a slightly lower risk of diabetes. It is not yet known if Lorcaserin has other side effects.
The pill is taken twice a day and costs around US $ 220-290 per month in the US
The drug is not a European license In the United Kingdom, it should be approved by the National Institute of Health and Care (Nice), before it could be prescribed.
However, it could provide an alternative to invasive weight loss procedures such as gastric banding.
More than half of British adults are probably overweight or obese. Both diseases carry an increased risk of diabetes, cancer and heart disease.