What is Ozempic?
Ozempic, generically known as semaglutide, is a type 2 diabetes medication currently utilised in Australia. It is an injectable glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist that mimics a naturally occurring hormone in the body, which aids in regulating blood sugar levels .
Contrary to some misunderstandings, Ozempic is not officially approved as a weight-loss medication in Australia. It is critical to distinguish that while some weight loss might occur due to the medication's appetite-suppressing effect, Ozempic is not designed as a standalone fat-loss treatment. It should be noted that alternative medications like Wegovy (a higher dose semaglutide) and Saxenda (liraglutide), are approved for chronic weight management in the context of a calorie-reduced diet and increased physical activity [2,3].
How does Ozempic Work?
Ozempic, like other glucose-lowering medicines, acts on multiple fronts in the body to control blood sugar levels, particularly in patients with type 2 diabetes. It operates by increasing insulin secretion and reducing the amount of glucose released from the liver when blood sugar levels are high. Additionally, Ozempic slows the rate at which food leaves the stomach, leading to a feeling of fullness that may contribute to weight loss .
However, it is essential to recognise that any weight loss is a secondary effect and not the primary purpose of this medication. Health professionals will typically prescribe Ozempic to manage blood sugar in patients with type 2 diabetes .
Who can take Ozempic?
Ozempic is typically prescribed for adults with type 2 diabetes who are struggling to maintain optimal blood sugar levels with diet, exercise, and other medicines. It is important to highlight that, like all prescription medications, Ozempic should be prescribed under the guidance of health professionals. The prescriber's clinical judgement, based on a comprehensive understanding of the patient's health conditions and current medications, guides prescribing decisions [6,7].
It should be noted that Ozempic is not approved for weight loss in Australia, unlike some other countries. Instead, individuals interested in prescription weight-loss medications should consider other options, such as Wegovy and Saxenda, which have been approved for this purpose .
Ozempic Shortage Brisbane
Recently, an Ozempic shortage has been reported, linked to a worldwide shortage of the medication. This issue affects Brisbane, along with rural and remote areas across Australia. Initial supplies may remain unstable over the next few weeks .
Due to the shortage, patients might face challenges in obtaining their regular doses. To manage this, health professionals, pharmaceutical wholesalers, and community pharmacies have been advised to apply purchasing limits to minimise risk and maintain limited supplies. Patients with current valid prescriptions for Ozempic should monitor supply updates closely, keeping in touch with their doctors and pharmacists to ensure continuous treatment [10,11].
The Therapeutic Goods Administration and Royal Australian College of General Practitioners are working diligently to monitor the situation, striving to ensure a fair distribution of available stock among the patients affected .
Prescription Fat-loss Medications Available
Prescription fat-loss medications such as Wegovy and Saxenda are available in Australia for chronic weight management in adults who are overweight or obese. These medications work by mimicking the body's natural hormones to suppress appetite, ultimately leading to a reduction in calorie intake [13,14].
It is crucial to reiterate that these medications are not a standalone treatment for fat loss. For them to be effective treatments, they need to be taken alongside a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity. Patients should work closely with their doctors and other health professionals to create a balanced and comprehensive weight management plan that includes diet, exercise, and potentially, weight loss medication.
Moreover, while Wegovy and Saxenda are approved for weight management, the off-label use of other medications for weight loss, including Ozempic, is strongly recommended against, due to the potential risk of side effects and the lack of robust evidence supporting their efficacy for weight loss .
Fat-Loss Medication Myths
While prescription weight-loss medications can contribute to weight loss, they are not "magic pills." They require consistent effort on the part of the patient in adhering to a healthy diet and maintaining an active lifestyle .
A common misconception is that these medications can cause weight loss without lifestyle changes. However, these medicines work best in conjunction with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity . Furthermore, patients should not expect to lose weight immediately after starting the medication; weight loss typically happens gradually over weeks or months .
Another myth is that these medications can be used indefinitely without consequences. In reality, weight-loss medications are intended for temporary use, and long-term use may lead to potential side effects. Once the medication is stopped, weight maintenance through a healthy lifestyle is crucial to prevent rebound weight gain.
Ozempic Doctor in Brisbane
Chronic Therapy offers teleconsultations with experienced doctors who can assess patients for the appropriateness of medications such as Ozempic. A valid prescription can be obtained following a comprehensive teleconsultation, where the doctor assesses the patient's overall health, current medications, lifestyle, and individual needs.
After the consultation, if the patient is deemed suitable for Ozempic, the doctor can issue an electronic prescription, which is sent directly to the patient's mobile phone. This digital prescription can be used at any pharmacy that dispenses medication across Australia.
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Buy Ozempic in Brisbane
For those residing in Brisbane, Ozempic can be accessed through Chronic Therapy's streamlined process. Once a teleconsultation with a Chronic Therapy doctor has occurred, and the patient is deemed suitable, an electronic prescription can be sent directly to their mobile phone.
With this electronic prescription, patients can access Ozempic from any pharmacy that stocks the medication. However, given the worldwide shortage of Ozempic, it is crucial for patients to be in regular contact with their local pharmacies to confirm stock availability. Alternatively, patients can opt to have the medication delivered to their home, a service that Chronic Therapy can facilitate.
Although there is a shortage of Ozempic worldwide, including in Brisbane, Chronic Therapy is diligently working to connect patients with appropriate doctors and medications. However, patients are urged to understand the specific registered indications for each medication, with Ozempic primarily used to treat type 2 diabetes and not for weight loss.
Chronic Therapy can assist patients in Brisbane by offering comprehensive teleconsultations with doctors who can assess the appropriateness of medications like Ozempic. Once deemed suitable, electronic prescriptions are issued that can be redeemed at community pharmacies.
Patients interested in learning more or booking a consultation are encouraged to contact Chronic Therapy's dedicated team. Remember, weight management is a lifelong journey that requires a balanced diet, regular physical activity, and possibly medication under the guidance of a healthcare professional.
Disclaimer: The content of this article is intended solely for informational purposes and does not serve as medical advice. At Chronic Therapy, our doctors diligently evaluate patients for the appropriateness of medications. Please be aware that scheduling a consultation with a Chronic Therapy doctor does not guarantee the issuance of a prescription.