Nowadays everyone is talking about the wonders of newer medications for weight loss. These drugs have become increasingly popular in the past year for their weight-loss effects. So, let us describe them to you and explain how they work. They basically reduce a person’s appetite, causing the stomach to empty more slowly, so that a person feels fuller faster. They are injectable medications that mimic the “I feel full” hormone (glucagon-like peptide 1), which causes a person to eat less and get full quicker. Originally, they were used as diabetic medications that can also help control blood sugar levels. Some of these include Wegovy, Ozempic, Mounjaro, and Semaglutide, to name a few. Find out more about weight loss medications here.
And how do you take them? They are generally given as a once-a-week injection that you administer yourself. The dose starts small and is gradually increased each week. What about results? The expected weight loss results vary, ranging from 12-33 pounds. What about side effects? The side effects of the medicine include nausea, headache, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, indigestion, and abdominal pain. The medication should not be used in patients that have had pancreatitis or have a family history of medullary thyroid cancer or Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Syndrome II.
Would insurance cover it? Insurance can cover these medications if the patient has a diagnosis of diabetes. However, if the medication is not covered by insurance, they can be quite expensive costing up to $1500.00 for a month supply. But if you still want to give it a try, even without insurance, some local compounding pharmacies have been helpful by formulating a version of these medications at a less expensive cost ranging from $200.00 to $350.00 for a month supply.
But let’s be clear – although these medications show some promise in helping patients achieve their goal weight, many patients may still need a surgical option to assist with combating bigger issues with long-term obesity. You can learn more about our surgical options here. So, let’s talk about your individual case and find what’s best for you. At Total Wellness and Bariatrics, we offer multiple options which may include medications if there are no contraindications. So, get started and contact our office today if you would like to discuss medical or surgical options for weight loss.