Weight Loss Strategies
Many people are looking to lose weight or struggle with chronic weight management. Proper weight management has many health benefits and should always be done properly. Weight loss comes down to solving an equation. Calories burned need to be more than calories consumed. Proper diet and exercise are the best way to maintain both a healthy weight but also provide overall physical benefits. A good support system is also a crucial part of a healthy lifestyle. For some people, despite their best efforts, they are unable to achieve target weight goals on their own. For some people, medication may be helpful.
What is Semaglutide?
Semaglutide is a GLP-1 agonist that has been used in helping patients with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar for many years. It is marketed by Novo Nordisk as an injection as the drug Ozempic® and as an oral tablet as Rybelsus®. The FDA recently added an additional indication to the drug, allowing it to help patients battling chronic weight management. This is the same injectable drug but marketed by Novo Nordisk as Wegovy®. At Sweetgrass Pharmacy we have formulated a compounded liquid sublingual (under the tongue) form of the drug. Same drug, different formulation. A compound is when a pharmacy takes an available form of a drug and changes the dosage form or strength to customize the final product for the patient. Our formulation contains semaglutide as well as cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12). The B12 helps with many things, including creation of red blood cells and energy. It is often lacking in people who are overweight.
What is the Dosage and How is It Supplied?
The medication comes in a 30ml amber glass dropper bottle with a graduated 1ml dropper. It should be stored at room temperature and shaken before use. If you are taking semaglutide for the first time, you will be instructed to begin with a titration as directed by your provider. This means that you will start with a smaller dose and increase after 7 days. Titrating this medication helps to reduce gastrointestinal side effects and nausea. Do not use higher doses than stated on your prescription label. It does not matter what time of day you administer the medication, and it can be taken with or without food.
What Are the Side Effects?
The most common side effects include gastrointestinal related symptoms such as abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. These side effects may be more common after initiation and during dose escalation. Extreme sensitivity reactions such as rash, trouble breathing, swelling of the mouth, face, or throat should be reported to your prescriber immediately. Low blood sugar can occur and is marked by signs of dizziness, headache, feeling sleepy or weak, shaking, fast heartbeat, confusion, hunger, change in eyesight, or sweating. Discontinuing the use of the medication may be necessary should these reactions occur. Always consult your prescriber or pharmacist before stopping any medication.
How Do I Get a Compounded Medication?
All compounded medications are available by prescription only from your physician, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant. We have created a template for them here. You may print and take this form to your appointment to discuss if this medication is appropriate for you. The completed prescription can then be brought to Sweetgrass Pharmacy. Contact the pharmacy for more information.
Disclaimers: By FDA definition, no compounded medication has been tested for safety or efficacy. While we do our best to follow compounding best practices, we do not perform the same testing as a drug manufacturer.