Semaglutide is a once-weekly injectable glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) RA — a class of medicines known as glucagon-like peptide receptor agonists — The drug Wegovy (semaglutide) at a dose of 2.4 mg was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a weight loss medication in June 2021.
The drug itself is called semaglutide; Wegovy and Ozempic are common brand names. It is one of only six medications that currently has FDA approval for chronic weight management and obesity treatment. Others include orlistat (Xenical), phentermine-topiramate (Qsymia), naltrexone-bupropion (Contrave), liraglutide (Saxenda), and setmelanotide (the latter of which is only approved for individuals with one of three specific rare genetic disorders that cause severe weight gain during childhood).
Semaglutide isn’t brand new. The drug has been available in other forms since 2017 (when lower-dose injection Ozempic™ was approved) and 2019 (when the oral form Rybelsus™ was approved).
Simply.Aesthetics uses only compounded Semaglutide in our medical weight loss program. This helps offset the cost while still delivering the positive effects of Semaglutide. You will be required to have an office visit once weekly for your semaglutide injection and B12 /MIC “slim” injections. No insurance is accepted. We do require baseline blood test, and medical screening by our clinicians, and BMI testing to determine eligibility to our program.
How It Works
Semaglutide as a GLP-1s, produces similar effects in the body to those of an incretin hormone: A type of hormone released naturally by your body when you eat food.
Incretin hormones signal the brain, endocrine, and gastrointestinal system that food has been consumed. This results in a complex cascade of hormones and neurotransmitters which effectively communicate feelings of satiety (feeling full). GLP-1 also plays a key role in the management of blood sugar levels and can improve blood sugar control in people living with impaired glucose tolerance or diabetes.
To get a little more granular, the GLP-1 hormone, in a healthy person, sends signals to the brain, muscles, stomach, liver, and pancreas whenever nutrients are taken in (i.e. when eating).
Here’s how it works in each of those different organ systems:
So, how does it help you lose weight? As a GLP-1 receptor agonist, Semaglutide works by imitating your body’s natural GLP-1 effects. In those with type-2 diabetes or those living with overweight or obesity, natural GLP-1 production may be lower than normal. By injecting it once weekly, blood sugar levels are more easily controlled. This supports weight loss in a variety of ways, one of the most significant being that Semaglutide increases the feeling of fullness (or satiety) after meals. It also decreases the of gastric emptying which also makes you feel full.
An initial consultation is required to discuss eligibility to the program. We require a baseline of certain blood tests within the last six months and patients need to be at least a BMI of 27 to qualify. Patients with a family history of Multiple Endocrine neoplasia (MEN), renal, liver or pancreatic disease also are NOT qualified or eligible for the program. Patients on insulin and certain diabetic medications may not qualify. Once program begins we start you at a dose of 0.25mg and every two weeks your dose may increase depending on side effects and tolerability. We recommend that you sustain healthy eating and lifestyle habits including exericise during your time on our program.
The possible side effects include:
- Stomach (abdomen) pain
- Tiredness (fatigue)
- Upset stomach
- Bloated, belching, or gas
- Stomach flu
More serious potiental effects include but are not limited to:
In rodents, semaglutide causes dose-dependent and treatment-duration-dependent thyroid C-cell tumors including medullary thyroid cancer, at clinically relevant exposures. In humans, the relevance of semaglutide-induced rodent thyroid C-cell tumors has not been determined.
Contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC or in patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2.
We advise patients of the potential risk for Medullary Thyroid Cancer ( MTC) with semaglutide and the possible symptoms of thyroid tumors (eg, a mass in the neck, dysphagia, dyspnea, persistent hoarseness).
Warnings and more serious side effects/complications:
Thyroid C-cell Tumors: See above.
Acute Pancreatitis: Has occurred in clinical trials. Discontinue promptly if pancreatitis is suspected. Do not restart if pancreatitis is confirmed.
Acute Gallbladder Disease: Has occurred in clinical trials. If cholelithiasis is suspected, gallbladder studies and clinical follow-up are indicated. Other gallbladder problems, including but not limited to, gallstones may also surface.
Hypoglycemia: Concomitant use with an insulin secretagogue, such as sulfonylureas, or insulin may increase the risk of hypoglycemia, including severe hypoglycemia. Reducing the dose of insulin secretagogue or insulin may be necessary. We inform all patients of the risk of hypoglycemia and educate them on the signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia.
Acute Kidney Injury: Has occurred, typically due to dehydration. We can monitor renal function when initiating or escalating doses of Semaglutide in patients reporting severe adverse gastrointestinal reactions or in those with renal impairment reporting severe adverse gastrointestinal reactions.
Hypersensitivity: Anaphylactic reactions and angioedema have been reported postmarketing.
Diabetic Retinopathy Complications in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes: Has been reported in trials with semaglutide. Patients with a history of diabetic retinopathy should be monitored.
Heart Rate Increase: Monitor heart rate at regular intervals.
Suicidal Behavior and Ideation: Monitor for depression or suicidal thoughts. Discontinue semaglutide in case of unusual changes in mood or behavior.
Patients with BMI OF > 27 and not on insulin or medications that lower your blood sugar.
Endocrine tumors in the thyroid, parathyroid, pituitary, pancreas, or adrenal glands
A family history of Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia type 2 (MEN2)
Diabetes-related eye disease or vision problems
Active gallbladder disease
Thyroid cancer or if someone in your family had thyroid cancer
Pregnant, breast-feeding, or trying to get pregnant
What is the cost and do I need insurance?
The set cost for our compounded semaglutide is $475 per four week period no insurance is accepted.
How much weight can I lose?
With every weight loss program, there is no guarantee of the amount of weight loss. Studies have showed people have lost 10-20% of their body in a 75 day period.
Your premier destination for all your anti-aging and aesthetic needs. At Simply.Aesthetics, our mission is to provide you with the ultimate patient experience. We are passionate about improving the lives of our patients and transforming the way people feel about themselves. At Simply.Aesthetics, we aim to deliver the most effective and safest non-invasive anti-aging treatments to all seeking a more youthful and natural-looking appearance. We believe in the empowerment and confidence that comes from the transformation as we achieve your desired aesthetic goals together. We truly believe, BEAUTY IS OUR PRACTICE.