Pediatric obesity pharmacotherapy: Current state of the field, review of the literature and clinical trial considerations

A. S. Kelly*, C. K. Fox, K. D. Rudser, A. C. Gross, J. R. Ryder

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Despite the increasing number of medications recently approved to treat obesity among adults, few agents have been formally evaluated in children or adolescents for this indication. Moreover, there is a paucity of guidance in the literature addressing best practices with regard to pediatric obesity pharmacotherapy clinical trial design, and only general recommendations have been offered by regulatory agencies on this topic. The purposes of this article are to (1) offer a background of the current state of the field of pediatric obesity medicine, (2) provide a brief review of the literature summarizing pediatric obesity pharmacotherapy clinical trials, and (3) highlight and discuss some of the unique aspects that should be considered when designing and conducting high-quality clinical trials evaluating the safety and efficacy of obesity medications in children and adolescents. Suggestions are offered in the areas of target population and eligibility criteria, clinical trial end-point selection, trial duration, implementation of lifestyle modification therapy and recruitment and retention of participants. Efforts should be made to design and conduct trials appropriately to ensure that high-quality evidence is generated on the safety and efficacy of various medications used to treat pediatric obesity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1043-1050
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Obesity
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


Dive into the research topics of 'Pediatric obesity pharmacotherapy: Current state of the field, review of the literature and clinical trial considerations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this