By: Jen Fletcher, FNP-C
In 2018 a new medication came out for Diabetes Type 2 (adult-onset diabetes) called Ozempic. It was a huge breakthrough because not only were patients getting better blood sugar control, but they were losing weight. It proved to be a safe and effective medication for Diabetes without significant side effects. Fast forward to 2021-22, another brand of Semaglutide called Wegovy got FDA approval for weight loss and was available. Unfortunately, health insurance rarely covers weight loss meds therefore compounding pharmacies took it upon themselves to start compounding Semaglutide medication for weight loss. Generic Semaglutide is NOT FDA approved for weight loss.
Here is a summary of how the Semaglutide works-
-it’s an agonist of incretin GLP-1 (metabolic hormone) that stimulates a decrease in blood sugar. (Benefit: helps with weight loss, energy, and mood.)
-GLP-1 presents in several areas of the brain involved with appetite regulation. (Benefit: lower appetite.)
-It slows gastric emptying (Benefit: feel full sooner and don’t feel hungry all the time.)
I have personally been prescribing Semaglutide for 5 years now. This is my anecdotal experience. The common side effects that I have seen are nausea, diarrhea, constipation, heartburn. I have not had any patients have any significant problems such as thyroid cancer, pancreatitis, significant hypoglycemia, or bowel obstructions. Typically, the brand name products are running $500-1000 per month. That is why the compounded version are so popular because they are significantly less.
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