When a “Miracle” Type 2 Med Ozempic Doesn’t Work 

By Patrick Totty 

My pharmacist recently recommended that I start taking Ozempic, the type 2 medication that has become a white-hot sensation among doctors whose patients need to lose weight. 


As you know, Ozempic (semaglutide) originally was introduced as a medication for enhancing blood sugar control. But its unexpected side effects of dramatic weight loss and great appetite control quickly became obvious to doctors and pharmacists. It didn’t take long for medical people to begin prescribing Ozempic off-label, meaning that it was now being applied to patients who were not type 2s but were obese or overweight. 


These days Ozempic’s use as a weight reduction medication has eclipsed its original purpose of lowering A1c’s in type 2 diabetes patients. Like previous “miracle” weight-loss medications, such as Xenical and Saxenda, Ozempic is the talk of the town and toast of diet trendies everywhere. 


But in my case, that wasn’t the case. I’m the oddball who’s here to report that Ozempic doesn’t always work. I’m not saying it doesn’t help with weight loss and appetite control in many more instances than not, but for me it was a bust. 


My weight over the past two years has fluctuated between 185 and 190 lbs. on a 5-foot-8 frame. If I were 30 years younger, I might be considered slightly overweight, but at my age (75) I happily carry around an extra 10 lbs. It’s my energy reserve, a store of fat that my body can call upon in case I fall seriously ill.  


I expected that I would lose weight as I began injecting Ozempic once a week. I also expected to feel less hunger. Neither happened. My weight continued hovering between 185 and 190 lbs., and my appetite remained strong—so strong that I had to very consciously resort to calorie counting and portion control to make sure I kept to my current weight. 


I took Ozempic for three months, long enough to test and see its effects on me. Looking back, it’s as though I had never taken it. Stopping Ozempic not only brought my experimental use of it to an end, it also lightened the load on my pocketbook. Even though my health insurance provider paid most of the cost for my injections—a hefty sum—the amount left for me to cover was no small matter. I could afford it, but am happy not to have to pay it anymore. 


Is there a moral here? Only a small one: No matter how marvelous a medication may seem, especially one enveloped in such positive buzz as Ozempic, it’s not going to work its wonders on everybody who takes it. It’s best to look at any new diabetes medication with modest expectations and to not be put out if it doesn’t live up to the hype surrounding it.   


While I was a bit surprised at Ozempic’s total lack of an effect on me, I haven’t walked around in the aftermath disappointed or even thinking about all that much. I was happy to give it a try, and happy knowing that I don’t have to wonder about it anymore.  


As for the many persons who have enjoyed great benefits from Ozempic, more power to them. An exception here or there does not subject a rule to all that severe a test. 

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