Weight-loss drug Belviq seems safe for heart, study finds

This undated image provided by Eisai in August 2018 shows the company's Belviq medication. –The Associated Press

For the first time, a study finds that a drug can help people lose weight and keep it off for several years without raising their risk for heart problems.

Doctors say the results may encourage wider use of the drug, Belviq, (BELL’-vik), to help fight obesity.

Belviq has been sold in the United States since 2013 and is the first of several new weight-loss medicines to pass a heart safety study required by federal regulators to stay on the market.

A study in 12,000 people found that after three years, heart problems were no more common among Belviq users than among those taking dummy pills.

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Results were discussed Sunday at a European Society of Cardiology meeting in Munich and published by the New England Journal of Medicine.