New drug treatments for obesity are urgently needed. The results from a trial of once-weekly subcutaneous semaglutide injections at a dose of 2.4 mg as an adjunct to lifestyle suggest that this approach may yield sustained benefit. Adults with a body-mass index of 30 or greater (≥27 in persons with ≥1 weight-related coexisting condition), who did not have diabetes, and randomly assigned to receive 68 weeks of treatment with once-weekly subcutaneous semaglutide (at a dose of 2.4 mg) or placebo, plus lifestyle intervention. The mean change in body weight from baseline to week 68 was −14.9% in the semaglutide group as compared with −2.4% with placebo, for an estimated treatment difference of −12.4 percentage points (95% confidence interval [CI], −13.4 to −11.5; P<0.001). A greater proportion of people treated with semaglutide achieved weight reductions of 5% or more (1047 participants [86.4%] vs. 182 [31.5%]), 10% or more (838 [69.1%] vs. 69 [12.0%]), and 15% or more (612 [50.5%] vs. 28 [4.9%]) at week 68 (P<0.001 for all three comparisons of odds. Semaglutide produced a greater improvement in cardiometabolic risk factors and a greater increase in participant-reported physical functioning. Nausea and diarrhea were the most common adverse events with semaglutide; they were typically transient and mild-to-moderate in severity and subsided with time. Given the grave consequences of obesity, this approach appears worthy of greater deployment. See the paper, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, here.
Semaglutide for weight loss
Feb 12, 2021