WHAT IS WEGOVY? HOW DOES IT WORK?
Wegovy is a once-weekly injection of semaglutide, which is a medication that boosts levels of glucagon-like-peptide (GLP-1) in the body. GLP-1 is a key regulator of weight and blood sugar. It helps to suppress appetite through the brain, and it slows stomach emptying to increase the sensation of fullness.
IS WEGOVY THE SAME MEDICATION AS OZEMPIC? HOW ARE THEY DIFFERENT?
Yes, Wegovy and Ozempic are both semaglutide medications. However, Ozempic is FDA approved for diabetes at a maximum strength of 1.0mg per week, while Wegovy is FDA approved for the treatment of overweight and obesity at a maximum strength of 2.4mg per week. The higher strength is associated with greater weight loss.
HOW IS WEGOVY ADMINISTERED?
Wegovy comes in single-use, pre-filled pens. Each pen is 1 dose. To use the pen, simply remove the cap, press the pen firmly against the skin, and the medication will be delivered subcutaneously. A yellow indicator on the side of the pen will show when the medication is fully delivered. Most patients inject the medication in the upper arm, belly, or thigh.
HOW OFTEN DO I TAKE THE MEDICATION?
Once per week. Choose a day that is convenient for you, and set a reminder so that you don’t forget!
HOW IS THE DOSE ADJUSTED OVER TIME?
The starting dose is 0.25mg. You will use this for 1 month (4 weekly injections). Assuming you are tolerating it well, the dose will increase to 0.5mg the following month. Your provider will continue to increase the strength every month depending on how you are responding to it, and whether you have any side effects. The available strengths are 0.25mg, 0.5mg, 1.0mg, 1.7mg, and 2.4mg. Therefore, you will reach the highest dose after 5 months.
HOW LONG DO I STAY ON THE MEDICATION?
Wegovy is considered a long-term medication. If you are tolerating it well, and it is helping you to lose weight, it is recommended to continue the medication.
WHAT ARE THE MOST COMMON SIDE EFFECTS?
Nausea is the most common side effect of Wegovy, followed by diarrhea or constipation. The very low starting dose is intentional, so that your body can adjust to the medication. Most symptoms improve with time. In the clinical trials of Wegovy, approximately 4.5% of patients stopped their medication due to side effects.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM A CANDIDATE FOR WEGOVY DRUG THERAPY?
Your medical provider will review your medical history during your initial consultation, to determine if Wegovy is the right medication for you. In some circumstances, it may not be recommended. For example, if you are using a different GLP-1 medication, you cannot combine it with Wegovy. Also, patients with a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer should not use Wegovy. It is also contraindicated if you have a rare genetic syndrome known as multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN2).
I HAVE A THYROID DISORDER, CAN I USE WEGOVY?
Wegovy is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer, which is a rare type of thyroid cancer. However, it is safe to use if you have a history of hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, or currently take thyroid medication.
HOW MUCH WEIGHT CAN I EXPECT TO LOSE?
While individual results will vary, the average weight loss in the Wegovy clinical trials was approximately 15% of body weight.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE TRUE YOU WEGOVY PROGRAM?
Your Wegovy program begins with a consultation with your Obesity Medicine trained provider, who will review your health history, weight loss goals, and ensure that you are a good candidate for the medication. You will next meet with your Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist, who will review your current eating habits and help you design a healthy, reduced calorie diet. You will continue to meet with your dietitian on a monthly basis, as your medication is adjusted and your weight loss is monitored.
IS THE COST OF THE WEGOVY MEDICATION INCLUDED IN THIS PROGRAM?
The medication itself will need to be obtained with your prescription coverage. We will work with your insurance to make sure any necessary prior authorizations are taken care of. If you do not have medical insurance, or your plan does not cover Wegovy, cash pay pricing is available.