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FDA Approves Semaglutide for Weight Loss

The well-publicised Semaglutide has been approved by the FDA as 'Wegovy' to treat obesity in the USA.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will be using Wegovy as a higher form of it’s diabetes medication Semaglutide as a weight-loss medication in patients with obesity in the USA.

Wegovy (semaglutide) is a glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonist, to be injected subcutaneously once-weekly. Wegovy is a higher-dose - 2.4 mg - version of the diabetes drug Ozempic (semaglutide).

The weight loss drug is the first to be approved since 2014 for treatment of chronic weight management.

Obesity is a common issue in the UK with 1 in 4 adults in the UK being obese and 1 in 5 children aged 10-11. The most widely used method to check if you're a healthy weight is known as body mass index (BMI). Your BMI is a measure of whether you're a healthy weight for your height.

For most adults, a BMI of:

  • 18.5 to 24.9 means you're a healthy weight

  • 25 to 29.9 means you're overweight

  • 30 to 39.9 means you're obese

  • 40 or above means you're severely obese

"Wegovy’s approval offers adults with obesity or overweight a beneficial new treatment option to incorporate into a weight management program," Dr. John Sharretts, the deputy director of the Division of Diabetes, Lipid Disorders, and Obesity in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in a statement.

Wegovy is a weight loss drug which comes in the form of an injection. The active ingredient is a synthetic version of a glucagon-like peptide-1 gut hormone that affects the parts of the brain which control appetite and hunger. When used to treat obese patients in studies it was injected once a week.

How does Wegovy work?

Wegovy slows the emptying of the stomach and promotes a feeling of fullness by acting on the brain.

During clinical trials to evaluate the safety of Wegovy when used for treating obesity, participants without diabetes who were prescribed Wegovy lost on average, 12.4% of their initial body weight when compared to a placebo.

Another clinical trial conducted using participants with type 2 diabetes, found those who took Wegovy lost 6.2 percent of their body weight compared to those who received a placebo.

Whilst the medication does have some side effects, data suggests Wegovy has a favorable safety profile when compared to older weight loss medications.

Can I get Wegovy?

Wegovy is not yet licensed for sale in the UK however we will be working with the pharmaceutical provider to treat patients with the drug once it is fully approved.

Our current range of weight loss programmes can be found here, which are effective for 85% of patients prescribed.

If you would like to find out more about how we can help you achieve your goal weight, why not start an online consultation with us today?

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