Type 2 Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects millions worldwide. Diabetes, especially Type 2, is more common in men than women. However, women often have more serious complications and are at a greater risk of death. Fortunately, medical advancements have led to the development of innovative medications to help manage blood sugar levels effectively. Ozempic and Mounjaro are two prescription injectible drugs in the class of incretin mimetics. This article aims to provide you with an in-depth understanding of these medications, including their dosing, uses, side effects, and associated costs to support a fuller discussion with your healthcare provider.
1. Ozempic: An Incretin Mimetic for Type 2 Diabetes
Ozempic, also known by its generic name semaglutide, is a once-weekly injectable medication designed to regulate blood sugar levels in adults with Type 2 diabetes. It works by helping the pancreas release insulin to move sugar from the blood into body tissues and plays a vital role in blood sugar control. It also works by slowing down the movement of food through the stomach and curbing appetite, thereby causing weight loss.
Dosing and Administration of Ozempic
Ozempic is available in three doses: 0.25 mg, 0.5 mg, and 1 mg. The starting dose is typically 0.25 mg, which can be increased every four weeks, based on individual tolerance and efficacy, up to a maximum dose of 1 mg. Following your healthcare professional’s instructions regarding dosing and administration techniques is essential.
Efficacy in Blood Sugar Control of Ozempic
Clinical trials have demonstrated that Ozempic effectively lowers haemoglobin A1C levels, a measure of sugar levels in the blood. On average, Ozempic has been shown to reduce haemoglobin A1C levels by 1.3%. By effectively mimicking the action of hormones that regulate blood sugar, Ozempic promotes glucose uptake and reduces glucose production in the liver.
Weight Loss Benefits of Ozempic
In addition to its blood sugar-lowering effects, Ozempic has been found to aid in weight loss. Clinical studies have shown that individuals taking Ozempic experienced an average weight loss of 4.2% of their body weight. This benefit can be significant for individuals with Type 2 diabetes who are overweight or obese, as weight loss can help improve insulin sensitivity and overall glycemic control.
Side Effects of Ozempic
The most common side effects of Ozempic include nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, constipation, and abdominal pain. These side effects are typically mild and temporary. Other less common side effects include headache, fatigue, dizziness, upper respiratory infection, back pain, muscle pain, joint pain, indigestion, gas, decreased appetite, and weight loss. If you experience any persistent or severe side effects, it is crucial to consult your healthcare provider.
Cost of Ozempic
Ozempic is an effective treatment option for Type 2 diabetes; however, it is worth noting that it comes with a higher price tag. On average, a month’s supply of Ozempic costs around $650. Depending on your insurance plan, your insurance provider may cover the cost of Ozempic when prescribed by your healthcare provider for a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis. As of now, Ozempic is not approved to be prescribed solely for weight loss, despite many UAE residents using the drug for weight loss benefits with no Type 2 diabetes symptoms. UAE healthcare providers have warned UAE residents against purchasing the drug and starting the injectibles on their own without consulting a doctor first.
2. Mounjaro: An Incretin Mimetic for Type 2 Diabetes Treatment
Mounjaro, also known by its generic name efpeglenatide, is another incretin mimetic medication used to manage blood sugar levels in adults with Type 2 diabetes. Similar to Ozempic, Mounjaro offers weekly once-dosing convenience and can effectively regulate blood glucose levels. The active ingredient in Mounjaro is tirzepatide which works by activating two naturally produced hormones in the body: glucagon-like peptide-1, known as GLP-1, and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide, or GIP. This combined effect is believed to slow the emptying of the stomach by making people feel full longer, suppress appetite by slowing hunger signals to the brain, and help reduce blood sugar.
Dosing and Administration of Mounjaro
Mounjaro is available in three different doses: 2.4 mg, 3.0 mg, and 3.6 mg. The starting dose is typically 2.4 mg, with the option to increase the dosage every four weeks based on individual tolerance and response, up to a maximum dose of 3.6 mg. It is vital to consult your healthcare provider for personalised dosing instructions.
Efficacy in Blood Sugar Control of Mounjaro
Clinical trials have demonstrated that Mounjaro effectively reduces haemoglobin A1C levels in individuals with Type 2 diabetes. On average, Mounjaro has been shown to lower haemoglobin A1C levels by 1.8%. This reduction is crucial for maintaining optimal glycemic control and minimizing the risk of long-term complications associated with diabetes.
Weight Loss Benefits of Mounjaro
Like Ozempic, Mounjaro has also been shown to contribute to weight loss in individuals with Type 2 diabetes. Clinical studies have indicated an average weight loss of 5.6% of body weight among individuals taking Mounjaro. This added benefit can positively impact overall metabolic health and further support blood sugar management.
Side Effects of Mounjaro
The most common side effects of Mounjaro are similar to those of Ozempic, including nausea, vomiting, constipation, and abdominal pain. Additionally, individuals may experience side effects such as headache, fatigue, dizziness, upper respiratory infection, back pain, muscle pain, joint pain, indigestion, gas, decreased appetite, and weight loss. The side effects are typically experienced in the early days of usage and reduce as the body adapts to the medication. If any of these side effects persist or become bothersome, it is essential to seek medical advice.
Cost Considerations of Mounjaro
Mounjaro, like Ozempic, is a valuable treatment option for Type 2 diabetes management. However, it is essential to note that Mounjaro comes at a higher average cost of around $750 for a month’s supply. Various savings programs, insurance coverage, and manufacturer discounts can assist patients in reducing the financial burden associated with Mounjaro. Depending on your insurance plan, your insurance provider may cover the cost of Mounjaro when prescribed by your healthcare provider for approved diagnosis. UAE healthcare providers have warned UAE residents against purchasing the drug and starting the injectibles on their own without consulting a doctor first.
Ozempic vs. Mounjaro
Mounjaro is more effective for weight loss and blood sugar improvement than Ozempic. However, studies have shown that Ozempic has a better safety profile than Mounjaro, with more people stopping Mounjaro due to side effects and other adverse events. If you’re looking for a medication to help you lose weight and improve your blood sugar levels, Mounjaro will lead to more weight loss and blood sugar reductions. Although, you’re more likely to tolerate Ozempic and stay on the medication.
Ozempic and Mounjaro are effective and innovative medications used to manage blood sugar levels in adults with Type 2 diabetes. Both medications offer the convenience of once-weekly injections and provide additional benefits, such as weight loss. However, individual responses to either medication vary between individuals so it’s important to work closely with your healthcare provider to determine the appropriate dosage, monitor efficacy, and manage any potential side effects. Be mindful of side effects and contact your healthcare provider to determine the appropriate medication and dosage.
This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment. To the extent that this article features the advice of physicians, medical practitioners, or industry experts, the views expressed are the views of the cited expert and do not necessarily represent the views of Gaggler.