Evaluation of phentermine and fenfluramine, alone and in combination, in normal, healthy volunteers

by Brauer LH, Johanson CE, Schuster CR, Rothman RB, de Wit H.
Department of Psychiatry,
University of Chicago, IL 60637, USA.
Neuropsychopharmacology. 1996 Apr;14(4):233-41


Recent clinical reports indicate that combined administration of phentermine and fenfluramine may have useful effects in the treatment of drug abuse. The present study was designed to evaluate the subjective and mood-altering effects of these drugs, alone and in combination, in normal healthy volunteers. Seven male and five female volunteers participated in an eight-session, double-blind study in which each subject received each of the following drug conditions: d-amphetamine (10 and 20 mg), phentermine (30 mg), fenfluramine (40 and 80 mg), phentermine (30 mg) with fenfluramine (40 mg), phentermine (30 mg) with fenfluramine (80 mg), and placebo. Sessions were conducted in a laboratory setting two or three days a week. Subjects completed standardized self-report questionnaires and psychomotor tests before and at regular intervals after each drug administration. Phentermine produced effects that were similar to those of d-amphetamine, whereas fenfluramine produced different and apparently aversive effects (e.g., it increased measures of anxiety and confusion). Phentermine reduced the apparently aversive effects of fenfluramine when the two drugs were given together. These results suggest that the combination of phentermine and fenfluramine would have a low potential for abuse.