Xenical endures ad silence as FDA forces alterations

Goetzl, David
November 1999
Advertising Age;11/8/1999, Vol. 70 Issue 46, p40
Trade Publication
This article reports on the changes made by U.S. drug company Hoffmann-La Roche to the direct-to-consumer advertising campaign for its obesity drug Xenical as of November 1999. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) charged the commercial, valued at $70 million to $75 million, lacked fair balance and misled consumers in how it portrayed the drug's side effects and demonstrated who should use the product. The print portion of the campaign from Lowe Consumer Healthcare was not affected by the FDA action. The TV spot attempts to dispel myths that Xenical is a miracle pill. The side effect portion takes about a third of the 60 seconds. By actually blocking fat intake, Xenical differs from other weight-loss drugs that sought to control appetite.


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