Header Ads


The high price of Ozempic is pushing many to unregulated, copycat drugs for weight loss

The high price of Ozempic is pushing many to unregulated, copycat drugs for weight loss

When Robin Langois, 58, became prescribed the weightloss drug Wegovy closing year, she couldn`t have the funds for the excessive charge tag after her coverage wouldn`t cowl it.

But she later found on TikTok that humans may want to get their arms on what regarded to be the drug`s energetic component, semaglutide, from compounding pharmacies for a fragment of the charge.

Langois, of Tucson, Arizona, stated she became to start with hesitant, due to protection concerns, however she sooner or later determined a telehealth company to put in writing her a prescription.

“I`m now no longer 100% positive it`s what I`m getting,” Langois stated. She noted, however, that she`s skilled emotions of fullness and weight reduction, in addition to nausea, a not unusualplace aspect impact of the drug. “It`s operating adore it should,” she stated.

Either because of price or ongoing shortages, humans are looking for options to the emblem call medicinal drugs Ozempic and Wegovy, each of which include the energetic component semaglutide.

Some humans, like Langois, are turning to compounding pharmacies for the difficult-to-get weight reduction drugs.

Novo Nordisk, the only producer of Ozempic and Wegovy and the patent-holder of semaglutide, stated in a assertion that it does now no longer offer the component to those pharmacies, main a few professionals to impeach wherein pharmacies are sourcing the drug — and whether or not it's miles semaglutide at all.

“That`s the million-greenback question,” stated Dr. Fatima Cody, a doctor that specialize in weight problems at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston who serves as an adviser to Novo Nordisk.

What are compounding pharmacies?

Compounding pharmacies blend and adjust drug components to create medicinal drugs tailor-made to particular affected person needs, in step with the Food and Drug Administration.

Compounded medicinal drugs are normally created the use of the energetic components in drugs. In Ozempic`s and Wegovy`s case, that`s semaglutide.

But compounded drugs — whilst they include FDA-authorized components — aren't themselves authorized via way of means of the FDA, that means they're now no longer regulated, monitored or examined via way of means of the agency, stated Benjamin Jolley, a pharmacist and proprietor of Jolley`s Compounding Pharmacy in Salt Lake City.

Hospitals will every now and then use a compounded medicinal drug whilst a commercially to be had choice isn't always ideal, in step with the FDA. They may also decrease the dosage of ache medicinal drug to save you a few aspect effects, for example, or put off preservatives or dyes which could purpose an allergic reaction.

The FDA will even supply exemptions that permit compounding pharmacists to ensure medicinal drugs if there's a shortage, stated Jeremy Kahn, a spokesperson for the agency.

Are compounding pharmacies providing actual semaglutide? Is it safe?

Dr. Chris McGowan, who runs a weight reduction hospital in Cary, North Carolina, has observed that compounded variations of Wegovy and Ozempic are developing in popularity.

“What I`m listening to from sufferers is, `Oh, hey, I heard approximately this compounded semaglutide. Can I attempt that?`” he stated.

Mary Morgan Mills, 32, of Raleigh, North Carolina, got here to McGowan after taking what she became informed became a compounded model of semaglutide for approximately a year.

The weekly injection, which she obtained at a well-being center, made her nauseous, and he or she handiest misplaced approximately 15 kilos whilst taking it.

“I felt bamboozled,” she stated, including that she nevertheless had "bottles of it in my fridge."

"I've continually desired to move get it examined to peer what it surely is, however I do not know the process," Mills stated.

McGowan stated that compounding pharmacies, in lots of instances, aren't being absolutely obvious approximately how they`re sourcing the drug.

Jolley, who does now no longer provide semaglutide, stated it`s viable compounding pharmacists may be giving humans semaglutide sodium, a less expensive and changed model of the compound that`s supposed for studies use handiest. Semaglutide sodium, however, isn`t authorized via way of means of the FDA, he stated, which might make promoting the product illegal.

Compounding pharmacists may also be shopping excessive doses of semaglutide from wholesalers after which isolating it into smaller dosages or blending it with different drug components, he stated.

Matt Buderer, a pharmacist and proprietor of the Buderer Drug Company Compounding Pharmacy in Ohio, stated that might basically dilute the medicinal drug, which he stated doesn`t make experience due to the fact that might make the drug much less effective.

If what compounding pharmacies are providing as semaglutide isn't always surely the drug, it`s in the end a protection issue, due to the fact the components they're the use of might not be very well evaluated via way of means of the FDA, McGowan stated.

“What I`m telling sufferers is to be very cautious whilst thinking about any shape of compounded semaglutide or compounded tirzepatide, that's every other medicinal drug we`re seeing presently being provided in a compounded shape,” he stated. (Tirzepatide is a diabetes drug made via way of means of Eli Lilly that still has weight reduction effects.)

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.