Phentermine has been around a long time and is a well known and used prescription drug used to suppress appetite so that you eat less and lose weight.
It is used in conjunction with a reduced caloric intake and exercise program. It has been approved for short-term use in the treatment of obesity. Phentermine is a generic drug. Fastin was a prescription drug that contained the generic drug Phentermine. Due to severe side effects reported in the 1990s, Fastin was discontinued in 1998. Today there is a new Fastin sold over-the-counter (OTC) but this is a very different product and has nothing to do with the prescription form. It doesn’t contain Phentermine but rather Phenylethylamine, botanicals and a lot of caffeine and it is used as a weight loss supplement as well.
The FDA approved Phentermine (a prescription appetite suppressant) back in 1959 so it’s been around a long time. This is obviously a controlled substance and thought to be mildly addictive. Given that it is related to amphetamines chemically and pharmacologically it has the potential to be abused. Generic Phentermine has been sold under several brand names such as Fastin (now discontinued), Ionamin and Adipex-P. However, most people take the generic form. Phentermine is an effective appetite suppressant, however it has a number of side effects. Some of those side effects include: dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, insomnia, increased heart rate (tachycardia), high blood pressure and nervousness.
A very popular drug for weight-loss in the early 1990s was called Phen-fen. Phen-fen was a combination of Phentermine and Fenfluramine. As time went on, more and more side effects were reported with Phen-fen. In response to this, Fenfluramine was taken off the market. Some time later several of the brand name manufacturers discontinued their brand of Phentermine as well. Fastin was one of them. Fastin was discontinued in 1998. In this case, there is no difference between prescription Fastin and generic Phentermine other than the generic form is generally cheaper and that is why many people buy generics especially when they are the same thing as the branded product.
Interestingly, Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Fastin OTC, was able to purchase the Fastin name and trademark from the former prescription manufacturer which happens to be Beecham. So, Hi-Tech began producing a line of dietary supplements. So far they have 3 Fastin products for over-the-counter. These dietary supplement contain alkaloids which may have similar side effects as the prescription Fastin which includes: increased heart rate (tachycardia) and increased blood pressure.
It is important for over-the-counter (OTC) medications as well as prescription drugs to undergo clinical trials to determine safety ad efficacy. It’s also important to enforce testing standards especially for purity. Prescription drugs have to go through clinical trials and must pass Phase III trials if they are to be sold on the market. Currently, dietary supplements don’t have to undergo clinical trials because they are considered food by the FDA. So, keep it in mind that unless a dietary supplement has been shown to cause harm, it can be sold with few restrictions.