Stop Taking Ozempic

( – A recent study published in JAMA suggests that commonly used weight loss medications like Wegovy and Ozempic could heighten the risk of stomach paralysis and other severe gastrointestinal issues.

This research, conducted by The University of British Columbia (UBC), represents the first comprehensive epidemiological investigation into these adverse effects among non-diabetic individuals utilizing these drugs specifically for weight loss.

The heightened risk is associated with a group of medications known as GLP-1 receptor agonists, encompassing Ozempic (prescribed for diabetes management), Wegovy (prescribed for weight loss), Rybelsus (for type 2 diabetes), and Saxenda (for weight loss).

Stomach paralysis, officially termed gastroparesis, inhibits the nerves and muscles in the stomach from propelling food into the small intestine, impeding digestion. This condition is outlined on the Cleveland Clinic’s website. In addition to stomach paralysis, the drugs were found to be linked to an increased risk of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas) and bowel obstruction, preventing food from traversing the small or large intestine.

UBC researchers delved into health insurance claim records for about 16 million U.S. patients prescribed Ozempic, Wegovy, or either semaglutide or liraglutide medications over a 14-year period (from 2006 to 2020). Unfortunately, they couldn’t ascertain whether the condition was temporary or permanent.

Comparatively, those who took a GLP-1 agonist were 3.67 times more likely to develop stomach paralysis, had a 9.09 times higher risk of pancreatitis, and were 4.22 times more likely to experience bowel obstruction than those on another weight loss drug, bupropion-naltrexone.

Dr. Mahyar Etminan, an associate professor at UBC and a co-author of the study, highlighted that although these complications were rare, they were concerning considering the widespread usage of these medications worldwide.

In 2022, the number of people in the U.S. using GLP-1 agonists for diabetes or obesity reportedly reached 40 million.

The researchers emphasize the importance of updating warning labels on these drugs by regulatory agencies and drugmakers, which currently do not include the risk of gastroparesis. The decision to use these drugs, despite the risks, should be tailored to each patient’s unique circumstances.

However, the study does have limitations, such as a lack of access to complete medical histories of the subjects and an inability to evaluate risks with individual GLP-1 drugs. Despite these limitations, the study underscores the need for patients to be well-informed about potential side effects and make informed decisions regarding their use.