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Weight Loss Injection
May 10, 2023 1:06 pm
Semaglutide (Ozempic, Rybelsus, Wegovy, Saxenda) and tripeptide (Mounjaro) treat type II diabetes. They work thru several complex pathways. An observed side effect that has been noted in diabetic patients has been weight loss.
Some have been advocating using the class of medications for weight loss. However, Wegovy is the only medication approved for weight loss in non-diabetic patients.
There is a lot to be discussed here:
1-the use of the medications for weight loss is an off-label use (except Wegovy)- meaning that the FDA did not approve the medication as a weight loss drug.
The practical implication is that the medication’s safety and complication profile in non-diabetic patients looking to lose weight may be unknown and has not been studied.
2-The medication has become available thru compounding pharmacies. It is crucial to appreciate that compounding medications do not meet the same rigor and standards and may, in fact, not be the same formula as the FDA has stated.. This also means that a compounding pharmacy does not approve the medications in several states.
3-The most critical issue for me is the lack of a “long-term plan.” It is not clear what would happen when the patient stopped the medication. Will the patient experience weight regain? Will the patient require higher doses of the medication to maintain the weight loss, or will the medication stop working altogether? Unfortunately, we do not have these answers. For those skeptical about my questions, let me remind you that phentermine has significant side effects, and almost all patients experience weight gain when they have to stop the medication because of the cardiovascular complication of medication.
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