The diabetes drug Ozempic (semaglutide) has been shown to facilitate substantial weight loss for some patients.
Weight loss occurs because Ozempic curbs appetite and leads to eating less food and calories.
The very similar drug Wegovy (semaglutide) is specifically FDA-approved for chronic weight management.
Patients on these medications have lost significant weight, reporting positive impacts on energy, mobility, and health.
However, semaglutide must be taken continuously or else weight regain is likely to occur.
Gastrointestinal side effects like nausea and diarrhea are common, and more serious risks need to be monitored.
Major barriers are the high list prices of $900+ per month for these brand name drugs.
The manufacturing company Novo Nordisk says they are working to expand insurance coverage and patient assistance programs.
More research is still needed on the long-term safety and efficacy of semaglutide medications for obesity.
Under close medical supervision, semaglutide shows promise for weight loss for appropriate patients. But side effects, costs, and regain risk need consideration.