Biotech company VIVUS, Inc. (NASDAQ:VVUS) has struggled to pick up sales of its obesity medication Qsymia since the drug was launched in September. Last quarter, the company reported a mere $4.1 million in total revenue, and its massive selling, general, and administrative costs weighed heavily on its bottom line. In an effort to encourage both physician and patient adoption, VIVUS, Inc. (NASDAQ:VVUS) has not only established two free trial programs, but has also launched the “Q and Me” mobile app, whose aim is to help patients comply with their prescribed weight loss treatment, track food intake, and set exercise goals.
While Qsymia was the first obesity medication to hit the market in more than a decade, VIVUS, Inc. (NASDAQ:VVUS)’ app wasn’t the first to help patients manage their weight. Recently, Motley Fool health-care analyst Max Macaluso spoke with Dr. Domenica Rubino, a weight-management expert and representative of The Obesity Society. In the following video, Dr. Rubino discusses technologies that can be used to help track and manage weight loss. A transcript follows the video.
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Max Macaluso: Hi, welcome to The Motley Fool. I’m Max Macaluso, and I’m talking with Dr. Domenica Rubino, a representative of the Obesity Society and a practicing physician in weight management. Welcome.
Domenica Rubino: Thank you.
Macaluso: We spoke in a previous segment about how drugs can help obese patients lose weight, and exercise and diet are also very important in that process. What are some technologies that can help people also manage their weight?
Rubino: Max, actually there are quite a few technologies that can be very helpful. First of all, there are a lot of apps now that are available. Most people carry a smartphone.
Fundamentally, what’s important about these technologies is to remain mindful about what you’re doing — to record what you’re eating, record your exercise, to really help you stay focused and structured.
Macaluso: Tracking your progress.
Rubino: Absolutely. You can track your progress in terms of weight.
These apps can do that. You can record your food intake, record your exercise, and also track your progress in terms of your weight loss. That can be very helpful.
In addition to apps, a very simple thing is a pedometer that people wear on their waistband or in their chest pocket. What it does is measure your strides every day, and your steps every day. It can tell you how many calories.