Taking semaglutide, a type of injectable medicine, can have significant benefits and risks. Understanding its benefits and risks can help you make the right decision for your treatment goals. The following information explains some of the key things you should know about taking semaglutide: Benefits, Risks, Side Effects, Monitoring Proper Use, and How it’s Used. Keep reading to learn more.
What is semaglutide?
Semaglutide is a drug that is used to treat metabolic diseases such as diabetes, obesity, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). This medicine is a type of semaglutide derivative that has been modified to have a longer half-life. This reduces the frequency of dosing and increases the chance of success for people with diabetes and PCOS who have tried other medications.
Semaglutide and insulin-growth hormone combination therapy
Semaglutide is used in patients who have type 2 diabetes and are not able to produce enough insulin or who have insulin resistance. The drug is a form of semaglutide. It is a manmade hormone similar to insulin. The goal of treatment with this medicine is to help the body use insulin more effectively. The hormone is then converted into the active form so that it can enter cells. When taken as a pill each day, the medicine can increase insulin production by the cells by as much as 90%. This is a very helpful treatment option for people with diabetes who need more time to improve their blood sugar control.
Benefits of taking semaglutide
- Control Blood Sugar – Patients on insulin or who have diabetes may need to monitor their blood sugar and adjust their insulin dose. If the insulin dose is too low, then the risk for low blood sugar is high. By using semaglutide, patients can improve the effectiveness of insulin. This can help reduce the risk for low blood sugar by one-third.
- Weight Loss – There is a high incidence of overweight and obesity among individuals with diabetes and many other metabolic conditions. Taking semaglutide can help patients lose weight and reach a healthy, normal body weight. They can also reduce the risk for developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
- Improve Heart Health – Despite the risks of diabetes, many people who take this drug see positive improvements in their heart health. Blood flow is improved, the effect of atherosclerosis is reduced, and blood pressure is reduced. Together, these benefits can reduce the risk for stroke and heart disease.
Risks of taking semaglutide
- Powerful Medication – Like any medication, semaglutide can have serious risks. In addition to the risk for diabetes, this powerful drug can raise the risk for high blood pressure and heart disease.
- Blood Sugar Levels – If the dose is not adjusted properly, blood sugar levels can become too low. This is a serious medical condition known as hypoglycemia. Symptoms include confusion, headache, hunger, sweating, and shakiness.
- Weight Gain – Excess weight gain is another risk for people taking this type of medicine. It can lead to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancers.
- Increased Blood Pressure – Elevated blood pressure is a serious risk for individuals with diabetes. This medicine can cause this risk to increase by as much as 20%.
- Liver Damage – Another risk that people should be aware of is liver damage. Some people experience this while on this medicine. This can happen when the liver is overworked due to the increased hormone.
Side Effects of Taking Semaglutide
- High Blood Pressure – This effect can occur in about 5% of people who take this medicine.
- High Blood Sugar – The risk for this effect is high in individuals who have uncontrolled diabetes.
- Elevated Liver Enzymes – There is concern that the body may not be able to break down proteins properly when on this medicine or that it might build up in the blood.
- Weight Gain – In some people, this effect can occur.
- Acne – This side effect can occur in approximately one-third of people.
- Fatigue – This effect can occur in as many as one-fourth of people.
Monitoring Proper Use of Semaglutide
- Blood Sugar – Regular blood sugar monitoring is very important when taking this medicine. Insulin should be adjusted if the blood sugar is too low.
- Weight – Individuals should weigh themselves regularly and try to keep a healthy weight.
- Blood Pressure – This is important to monitor when on this medicine. – Liver Function – A blood test can be used to check for any changes in liver function.
How is semaglutide used?
Like other injectable medications, semaglutide is given by injection. After the recommended one-time dose, patients are treated with injections at least once a week. Vaginal cream is not approved for this indication.
How effective is semaglutide?
Short-term studies have shown that semaglutide is as effective as insulin when used as a long-term treatment for diabetes. Long-term studies are needed to confirm the benefits, but results so far are encouraging. Studies have shown that the risk for heart disease, stroke, and death is improved. Overall, the benefits are worth the risks of this drug. More studies will help determine the best use of this medicine.
Is it ok to take more than the maximum dose prescribed?
There are no safety studies that show that taking more than the recommended dose of semaglutide is safe or effective. There is a low chance that a large dose could cause fatal liver damage. Keep in mind that taking a large dose of insulin is generally dangerous and not recommended. Excess weight gain is the most likely possibility for a large dose of semaglutide.
Is it safe to use a vaginal cream for healing scars after semaglitide injection?
There is no strong evidence that using a semaglutide cream after injection is safe or effective. Vaginal use is not recommended with this type of medicine. There is the potential for serious side effects such as unwanted pregnancy, irritation from the cream, and increased risk for liver damage.
The benefits and risks of taking semaglutide are interesting. This medication has the potential for significant health benefits and risks. The benefits include better control of blood sugar and weight loss. The risks include high blood pressure and heart disease. People who take this medicine should check their blood sugar regularly and try to keep a healthy weight. They should also monitor their blood pressure and liver function and avoid excess weight gain.
Those believing they might be good candidates for this therapy are encouraged to contact us. The team of experienced healthcare providers working for Vital Force Therapy and Wellness can provide a comprehensive evaluation, determine your need, and formulate a plan best fitting a patient’s individual needs.
For additional information about our clinic, please call 205-352-9141.