Ozempic "Miracle Drug" Review

Dr. Osborn discusses his stance on Ozempic from a risk-benefit standpoint. Ozempic belongs to the class of GLP-1 receptor agonists that are prescribed to help manage diabetes effectively. By reducing appetite and boosting insulin release, Ozempic stabilizes blood glucose levels and helps patients shed those extra pounds.

Ozempic has been all the rage ever since it landed in the hands of celebrities. Truth be told, it’s been on the market for years, and I’ve been prescribing it for the past three. So, it’s nothing new despite what you’ve heard. Its effects, however, particularly those related to weight loss, have been so dramatic that they cannot be ignored. So what is Ozempic or, at a more general level, what is a GLP-1 receptor agonist, the class of medications to which Ozempic belongs?

A GLP-I receptor agonist or glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist is a medication for type II diabetes that improves one’s blood glucose levels through two mechanisms. One, it curbs the appetite by sending a satiety signal to the brain. And two, it stimulates insulin release from the pancreas. The result? Better glycemic control or lowered blood sugar levels and weight loss.

Additionally, some studies suggest potential cardiovascular benefits, lowering the risk of major cardiovascular events such as a heart attack. So there are a ton of benefits here. But in medicine, benefits nearly always come with risks.

All in all, the risks associated with Ozempic are predominantly gastrointestinal, the most common of which is nausea. We deal with this fairly frequently in the clinic, having prescribed the medications to hundreds and hundreds of patients over the years. A rarer reported side effect is pancreatitis which requires immediate medical attention. I’ve never seen it, however. And I know you’ve heard it causes thyroid cancer like testosterone supposedly causes prostate cancer. Both are wrong. In animal studies only, there is an increased risk of medullary carcinoma of the thyroid, but this has not been observed in humans. That said, if you have thyroid cancer or a history of multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome, please be sure to discuss it with your doctor. As always, medicine is about risks vs benefits. In my opinion, however, Ozempic and other GLP-I receptor agonists carry minimal downside risk and massive potential health benefits. As I always say to my patients, a leaner body is a healthier body.