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Created May 2019 | Updated Oct 2020



alpha-methyl-beta-keto-N,N-diethylphenethylamine | N,N-diethyl-beta-ketoamphetamine | N,N-diethylcathinone

DEA CODE 1610: Schedule 4

Diethylpropion is a sympathomimetic stimulant drug marketed as an appetite suppressant. Chemically, it is the N,N-diethyl analog of cathinone. Its mechanism of action is similar to other appetite suppressants such as sibutramine, phentermine and dextroamphetamine. Diethylpropion is an amphetamine that stimulates neurons to release or maintain high levels of a particular group of neurotransmitters known as catecholamines; these include dopamine and norepinephrine. High levels of these catecholamines tend to suppress hunger signals and appetite.

Diethylpropion (through catecholamine elevation) may also indirectly affect leptin levels in the brain. It is theorized that diethylpropion can raise levels of leptin which signal satiety. It is also theorized that increased levels of the catecholamines are partially responsible for halting another chemical messenger known as neuropeptide Y. This peptide initiates eating, decreases energy expenditure, and increases fat storage. It is used in the management of exogenous obesity as a short-term adjunct (a few weeks) in a regimen of weight reduction based on caloric restriction.

Weight Loss drugs, supplements, and products have been growing rapidly in recent years with hundreds of different options now readily available throughout the dieting industry. These products generally come with a minimal risk to your health and can have enormous health benefits for the user, and when combined with regular exercise and a healthy, well-balanced diet, it can become extremely easy to obtain and keep your ideal figure. However, some people still struggle to reach their goals with tried and tested methods and may need to consider prescription medications, this can be for a wide range of reasons. Diethylpropion is a prescription medication.

Diethylpropion is classed as a sympathomimetic and central nervous system stimulant drug. It is known by many other trade names and is marketed as an appetite suppressant, however, Diethylpropion is usually only approved on a short-term basis to help manage obesity in patients with an initial body mass index (BMI) of greater than 30 kg. It is prescribed in combination with a calorie restrictive diet for patients who have not responded to a regimen of diet and/or exercise alone.

Diethylpropion acts as an appetite-suppressant by reducing hunger sensation levels within patients. It can also increase blood pressure and stimulate the central nervous system. This can, in turn, potentially increase the patient's metabolic rate allowing them to burn fat at a higher rate than normal, however, this is usually combined with a calorie restrictive diet.

The purpose of a calorie restrictive diet in combination with this type of drug is to encourage the body to turn to its natural stores of fat to provide energy for the body throughout the day. This is ultimately what Diethylpropion actually does. Diethylpropion stimulates neurons in the brain to release and maintain high levels of catecholamines which are hormones produced by the adrenal glands, which sit on top of the kidneys including dopamine and norepinephrine resulting in a suppression of hunger signals and appetite.

Diethylpropion is used as a short-term weight loss aid to help treat obesity. It works by suppressing the appetite and is meant to be used in combination with an appropriate diet. Diethylpropion, which comes in short-acting and long-acting tablet form, is available by prescription only. While most people tolerate the drug well, potential side effects include insomnia, restlessness, nausea, and shakiness. Diethylpropion hydrochloride (Tenuate) is a prescription weight loss medication approved to treat obesity for short-term use only (just a few weeks). It should be used along with an appropriate diet and exercise. Do not take diethylpropion more often or at higher doses than prescribed, as this can lead to addiction or dependence.

Diethylpropion Hydrochloride
Maximum Dosage:
Prescribers Digital Reference
Adults:75 mg/day PO.
Geriatric:75 mg/day PO.
Adolescents:16 to 17 years: 75 mg/day PO.
Adolescents:Less than 16 years: Safety and efficacy have not been established.
Children:Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Important Information:

You should not take diethylpropion if you are in an agitated state, or if you have pulmonary hypertension, severe coronary artery disease, overactive thyroid, glaucoma, severe high blood pressure, or a history of drug abuse.

Do not use diethylpropion if you have used an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days, such as isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, or tranylcypromine.

Do not take diethylpropion together with any other diet pills unless your doctor tells you to.

Diethylpropion may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Drinking alcohol with this medicine can cause side effects.


Drug Interactions (158) Alcohol/Food Interactions (3) Disease Interactions (15)

What other drugs will affect Diethylpropion?
Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:
  • insulin or oral diabetes medicines
  • blood pressure medicine
  • medicine to treat mental illness
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with diethylpropion, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

A total of 158 drugs are known to interact with Diethylpropion.

  • 43 major drug interactions
  • 114 moderate drug interactions
  • 1 minor drug interactions

HRES PDF Tenuate

Tenuate (diethylpropion)
Side Effects:
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
  • chest pain, feeling short of breath (especially with exertion)
  • swelling in your ankles or feet
  • anxiety, feeling nervous or jittery
  • muscle twitches
  • feelings of extreme happiness or sadness
  • fast or pounding heartbeats, fluttering in your chest
  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out
Common side effects may include:
  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, upset stomach, constipation
  • headache, blurred vision
  • sleep problems (insomnia)
  • dizziness, drowsiness, tired feeling
  • depressed mood
  • dry mouth, unpleasant taste in your mouth
  • decreased sex drive
  • redness, bruising, or rash
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Diethylpropion has not been linked to either serum enzyme elevations or to clinically apparent acute liver injury.

Diethylpropion Hepatotoxicity:
Diethylpropion has not been linked to an increased rate of serum enzyme elevations during therapy; however, actual results of ALT monitoring during diethylpropion therapy have rarely been reported. Despite long term availability and wide use of diethylpropion, there have been no published reports linking it to clinically apparent acute liver injury.

E Likelihood score: E (unlikely cause of clinically apparent liver injury).

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of diethylpropion in children younger than 17 years of age.

Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of diethylpropion in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving diethylpropion.

Other Medical Problems:
Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Agitated state
  • Arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), advanced
  • Drug abuse or dependence, history of
  • Glaucoma
  • Heart problems (e.g., heart murmur, valvular heart disease)
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure), severe
  • Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid)
  • Pulmonary hypertension (increased blood pressure in the lungs) - Should not be used in patients with these conditions
  • Heart or blood vessel disease
  • Heart rhythm problems (e.g., arrhythmia)
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure), mild to moderate
  • Mental illness
  • Seizures or epilepsy - Use with caution. May make these conditions worse
  • Kidney disease - Use with caution. Higher blood levels of diethylpropion can occur, which increases the risk of serious side effects

Brand names:
  • Anorex
  • Linea
  • Nobesine
  • Prefamone
  • Regenon
  • Tepanil
  • Tenuate
  • Also known as diethylpropion
  • A stimulant drug
  • Used as an appetite suppressant in the short-term management of obesity, along with dietary and lifestyle changes

Recreational users of amfepramone in the UK refer to amfepramone tablets as "tombstones

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