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Study finds Wegovy can maintain weight for at least 4 years

Study finds Wegovy can maintain weight for at least 4 years
Study finds Wegovy can maintain weight for at least 4 years


large scale and long term Trials of the weight loss drug Wigovy (semaglutide) found that weight loss tends to occur for the first 65 weeks of taking the drug, or about 1 year and 3 months, but then tends to reach a plateau or “set point.” It turns out that there is. However, that initial weight loss was typically maintained for up to four years while weekly injections continued.

The survey results are Published Monday in Nature Medicine, comes from a new analysis of data from the SELECT trial, which was designed to examine the effects of drugs on cardiovascular health. The study was a multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study that specifically enrolled people with pre-existing cardiovascular disease who were overweight or obese but did not have diabetes. A total of 17,604 people from 41 countries participated in the trial. Of these, 72% were male, 84% were white, and the average age was approximately 62 years.

Last year, researchers The main results of the clinical trial were published.semaglutide was shown to reduce participants' risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular-related death. 20% increase In just over 3 years.

In a new analysis that followed the same participants over a longer period of time, the researchers focused on their weight loss trajectories and endpoints. People taking semaglutide experienced steady weight loss over the first 65 weeks of treatment and then hit a plateau. However, the initial weight loss was maintained through 208 weeks (4 years) of follow-up. On average, people who took the drug lost 10.2 percent of their weight, while the placebo group lost just 1.5 percent. This corresponds to a treatment difference of 8.7% for him.

This weight loss is less than that observed in other trials of semaglutide. In 2021, researchers published a study in the New England Journal of Medicine showing that people who took the drug lost 14.9 percent of their weight, while those who took a placebo lost 2.4 percent.12.5% ​​treatment difference.

Researchers behind the SELECT trial, which was funded by Novo Nordisk, the manufacturer of Wegobee, speculate that the trial's different design may explain the difference in weight loss. Early trials were specifically designed to study weight loss in people who were trying to lose weight and who tended to be younger than the subjects in the SELECT trial. In addition to semaglutide treatment, older trials also included other lifestyle interventions to help with weight loss. On the other hand, participants in the SELECT trial were not specifically seeking to lose weight and did not receive any additional lifestyle interventions for weight loss.

Still, researchers saw clinically meaningful weight loss across gender, body size, and geographic region. Of those receiving semaglutide, 52.4 percent moved into a lower BMI category during the trial, compared with just 15.7 percent in the placebo group. In addition, the proportion of obese patients in the semaglutide group decreased from 71% to 43.3%, while the proportion decreased from 71.9% to 67.9% in the placebo group.

The study has limitations, most notably that it primarily focused on older white men. Therefore, the weight loss results may not be generalizable. However, the authors concluded that this study supports widespread use of semaglutide in patients with cardiovascular disease who are overweight or obese. The next pressing question researchers must face is how long people should continue taking this effective but currently expensive drug.

This story was originally ars technica.




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