December 1, 2023

More than 2 out of 3 people taking a weight loss medication like Wegovy (semaglutide) were no longer doing so after one year, according to an analysis of pharmacy and medical claims data issued July 11 by Prime Therapeutics, a company that manages pharmacy benefits for about 38 million people.

Semaglutide drugs like Wegovy and the diabetes medication Ozempic belong to a class of medications known as GLP-1 receptor agonists. These drugs work by mimicking a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1, which targets parts of the brain that regulate appetite. The medications also slow the digestive process so people feel less hungry and eat less.

In clinical trials described on the drugmaker’s website, 48 percent of people taking Wegovy by once-weekly injection lost 15 percent or more of their body weight.

So, if semaglutide is so effective in helping people lose weight, why do many people stop taking it?


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