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Ozempic Semaglutide Injection Pen

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Ozempic
Semaglutide
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What is Ozempic (Semaglutide)?

Ozempic Semaglutide Injectable PensOzempic is a brand name for semaglutide which is used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes. It belongs to a class of drugs called Glucagon-like Peptide-1 (GLP-1) Agonists.

Key information about Ozempic:

  • Ozempic is not an insulin
  • It is not indicted for treatment with type 1 diabetes
  • It has not been studied in patients with pancreatitis and should not be used by people who have had a history of the condition (pancreatitis).
  • It is not known if it is safe and effective for adults under the age of 18 years of age

Ozempic is used in combination with diet and exercise to help improve glycemic control and reduce the risk of cardiovascular complications (CV death, nonfatal stroke, and nonfatal myocardial infarction).

In addition to lowering blood glucose levels, Ozempic helps individuals with weight loss, appetite suppression, and lowering blood pressure levels.

How is Ozempic used?

Ozempic can be used alone or with other medications. It is administered as a weekly injection under the skin. It is available as a single-use injection pen that is safe and easy to use.

Storage Information

Does Ozempic need to be refrigerated?

Yes. If you have excess Ozempic injectable pens, they should be stored in the refrigerator. The ideal storage is the top shelf of the refrigerator and away from cooling elements. This is similar to how a pharmacy keeps its supply of Ozempic. Semaglutide may degrade if the injectable pen is exposed to extreme cold. This can impact the effectiveness of the medication and potentially higher blood sugar levels.

Ozempic should be stored in the refrigerator between 36-47°F (2-8°C). After the pen has been used it can be kept within room temperature 59-86°F (5-30°C) for up to 56 days.

Instructions

Patients should be informed by their doctors about the potential risks and benefits of using Ozempic. It’s important for patients to maintain a proper diet, regular exercise, regularly monitor glucose levels and perform A1c testing, and understand the signs and symptoms of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia as part of their treatment. While using Ozempic, if patients experience periods of stress, fever, infection, trauma, or surgery they should seek medical advice as the dosage may need to be adjusted.

Doctors should instruct their patients to read the Medication Guide each time their prescription is renewed.

It’s important to understand the side effects as explained by your doctor or pharmacist. Side effects of Ozempic typically include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. It’s also important to discuss any drug interactions that may occur with another prescription drug.

If a dose is missed, it should be administered as soon as possible within 5 days of the missed dose If more than 5 days have passed then the dose should be skipped and administered the next dose on the regularly scheduled day. In each case, patients can then resume their regular once weekly dosing schedule.

When administering Ozempic, the following points should be considered:

  • Do not inject into the same location each time. Rotate injection sites.
  • Do not inject where the skin is thickened, or has pits or lumps as this can affect the effectiveness of the medication.
  • Do not inject where the skin is bruised, scaly, hard, tender, or damaged.

Information on Side Effects

Although Ozempic is FDA approved and considered safe when taken as instructed however this does not mean it comes without side effects.

Before you start Ozempic, you should discuss the possible side effects with your doctor or pharmacist. You should also review the FDA-approved labeling and instructions that come with your prescription.

Ozempic has a boxed warning about the risk of C-cell tumors that have occurred in rodents. Even though it is unknown about the effects on humans, it isn’t advised for those who have a history of thyroid cancer in their family to use Ozempic.

Common Side Effects

Patients using Ozempic have experienced mild or serious side effects. Side effects typically go away within a few days or weeks. If they do not go away, consult your doctor or pharmacist.

The list below does not include all possible side effects:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Upset Stomach
  • Flatulence (passing gas)

Serious Side Effects

Serious adverse reactions while taking Ozempic aren’t common. If you experience any serious side effects while taking this medication, inform your doctor or call 911 if you feel the symptoms are life-threatening.

Serious side effects and symptoms while taking Ozempic may include:

  • Symptoms of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas):

    • Severe back and abdominal pain
    • nausea
    • vomiting
    • unintended weight loss
    • fever
    • swollen belly
  • Symptoms of Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar):

    • confusion
    • dizziness
    • drowsiness
    • fast heart rate
    • feeling jittery
    • headache
    • hunger
    • irritability
    • sweating
    • weakness
  • Symptoms of diabetic retinopathy (diabetes-related eye complication):

    • blurred vision
    • poor night vision
    • seeing dark spots
    • vision loss
  • Symptoms of kidney damage:

    • confusion
    • fatigue
    • reduced urination
    • nausea
    • swelling in legs or ankles
  • Thyroid cancer*
  • Allergic reaction*

Side Effect Details

The following provides detailed information on the potential side effects caused by this medication.

Allergic reaction

Although rare, patients may experience allergic reactions while taking Ozempic if they are allergic to any of its ingredients. Symptoms of allergic reactions may include:

  • skin rash
  • itchiness
  • flushing ( redness, warmth, swelling of skin)

More serious allergic reactions may include:

  • difficulty breathing
  • swelling of the skin, particularly lips, eyelids, hands, or feet
  • swelling of mouth, tongue, or throat

Allergic reactions may differ between patients and it’s unclear how often allergic reactions occur. If you feel that you are experiencing a severe allergic reaction, seek medical attention immediately.

Nausea

The most common side effect reported in clinical studies is nausea. You may first experience symptoms of nausea when you begin taking Ozempic and during increased doses.

With continued use, symptoms of nausea may decrease or go away entirely. Speak to your doctor if symptoms do not go away.

Thyroid cancer

As mentioned previously, Ozempic has a boxed warning, which is the strongest warning by the FDA regarding thyroid cancer.

Ozempic has been found to increase thyroid tumors during animal studies however this has not been concluded in humans.

Cases of thyroid cancer have been reported in patients taking liraglutide (Victoza) which is a similar class of drugs to Ozempic. However, it has not been concluded if it is due to liraglutide or other factors.

You should not take Ozempic if you have a family history of thyroid cancer, specifically a rare endocrine condition called multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 or medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC).

If you are showing symptoms of thyroid tumors while taking Ozempic, contact your doctor immediately. These symptoms can include:

  • difficulty breathing
  • a hoarse voice
  • difficulty swallowing
  • a mass or lump in your neck

Injection Site Reactions

Injection site reactions (ie injection-site discomfort, erythema) have been reported in 0.2% of patients in placebo-controlled trials.

Increase in Amylase and Lipase

In a placebo-controlled study, patients experienced an increase of Amylase and Lipase from baseline. These changes were not found in the placebo-treated patients.

Cholelithiasis

In placebo-controlled studies that involved treating patients with Ozempic 0.5mg and 1mg reported 1.5% and 0.4% of Cholelithiasis were reported respectively. Placebo-treated patients did not report symptoms of cholelithiasis.

Increased Heart Rate

In placebo-controlled studies, patients using Ozempic 0.5mg and 1mg reported a mean increase of 2-3 beats per minute. Those in the placebo group reported a decrease in heart rate by 0.3 beats per minute.

Dizziness, Dysgeusia & Fatigue

Less than 0.4% of patients experienced dizziness, dysgeusia, and fatigue taking Ozempic.

Immunogenicity

Patients treated with Ozempic may develop anti-semaglutide antibodies which are consistent with immunogenic properties of peptide and protein pharmaceuticals.

Hypoglycemia

Even though Ozempic (semaglutide) does not cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), it may happen if taken with other diabetes medications. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about whether you need to have your other medication doses adjusted. Hypoglycemia may also be caused by consuming alcohol, not enough exercise, or not getting enough calories. Symptoms of hypoglycemia may include blurred vision, headache, dizziness, hunger, increased heartbeat, sweating, or tingling hands/feet. It is recommended that patients who experience hypoglycemia carry glucose tablets, hard candy, jelly beans, fruit drinks or soda (non-diet) in case of low blood sugar – or speak to their doctor about glucagon treatments.

Hyperglycemia

Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) may occur. Symptoms include increased thirst or urination. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist if you experience these symptoms.

The information above does not include all possible side effects. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you experience any side effects not listed above.

Drug Interactions

Concomitant use with insulin and insulin secretagogue (ie Sulfonylurea) may change how your medications work or result in potential complications. A doctor may choose to adjust dosage, exercise, and diet.

Since Ozempic causes a delay in gastric emptying, this may cause a potential impact on the absorption of other oral drugs i.e. Metformin.

Inform your doctor of all other prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Check your blood sugar regularly and share the results with your doctor. Let your doctor know if you are experiencing high or low blood sugar levels.

Do not modify your dosage without the approval of your doctor.

Warnings & Precautions

Risk of Thyroid C-Cell Tumors

If serum calcitonin is measured and found to be showing elevated or thyroid nodules from a physical examination or neck imaging, patients should be referred to an endocrinologist. Patients should be informed that semaglutide causes thyroid C-cell tumors in rodents and that this has not been conclusive in humans. Patients must report any symptoms of hoarseness, dysphagia, dyspnea, or a lump in the neck to their physician.

Pancreatitis

Patients should be informed of the risks of pancreatitis. In glycemic control trials, acute and chronic pancreatitis has been reported. Patients need to be aware of the signs and symptoms of pancreatitis which can include ongoing severe abdominal pain and vomiting. If signs of pancreatitis are confirmed, Ozempic treatment should be discontinued and your doctor should be consulted.

Diabetic Retinopathy

In a 2-year trial, more complications of diabetic retinopathy occurred in patients taking Ozempic (3.0%) vs those taking the placebo (1.8%). Patients in the trial had type 2 diabetes and high cardiovascular risk. It was found that the patients who had a high risk of diabetic retinopathy were predisposed based on their family history compared to those without. This is why patients with a history of diabetic retinopathy should be monitored closely.

If patients experience a rapid improvement in glucose control, this may indicate a worsening of diabetic retinopathy.

Hypoglycemia

When Ozempic is used in combination with insulin or insulin secretagogues (ie sulfonylureas), patients were at higher risk of hypoglycemia (high blood sugar levels).

Do not share Ozempic pens with other people

Ozempic pens should not be shared among patients even if they show similar symptoms and the needle has been changed. Sharing pens can lead to spreading infection and transmission of blood-borne pathogens.

Acute Kidney Injury

Reports have shown that patients treated with GLP-1 receptor agonists experienced acute kidney injury and worsening chronic renal failure. As a result, patients would require hemodialysis. Most of the reported events that happened with patients who have shown symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and dehydration have occurred. Renal function should be monitored closely in patients for severe adverse gastrointestinal reactions in patients taking escalated doses.

Hypersensitivity

If hypersensitivity occurs, patients should discontinue use and monitor until symptoms are resolved. Serious symptoms of hypersensitivity include angioedema and anaphylaxis. Patients with a history of these two reactions should be treated with caution and treated with another GLP-1 receptor agonist. Patients who have a history of angioedema or anaphylaxis with other GLP-1 receptors should be treated with caution.

Pregnancy

Pregnant women or those planning pregnancy should be advised of the potential risks to a fetus. Consult your doctor if you are pregnant or planning pregnancy. If diabetes is poorly managed during pregnancy, this can increase the risk of complications such as ketoacidosis, preeclampsia, birth defects, macrosomia, preterm delivery, spontaneous abortions, delivery complications, and stillbirth.

There is currently no evidence of semaglutide being transmitted in breastmilk from mother to child. However be sure to consult with your doctor or other healthcare practitioner if you are breastfeeding while on Ozempic.

Renal Failure and Dehydration

Patients should be advised by their physicians about the possible risk of dehydration due to gastrointestinal adverse reactions if they are using Ozempic. Patients should avoid fluid depletion. Doctors should explain the possible symptoms of renal impairment and the possible requirement of dialysis if renal failure occurs.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

The cost of Ozempic in the United States can cost patients easily over $1000 per pen. The price of Ozempic through our website is $469.79 per pen. With a prescription, you can order Ozempic online through our website or by calling our toll-free number at 1-888-525-1815.

No. Ozempic is a type of diabetes medication called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonist.

Ozempic is currently only available as a once-weekly injection. However, the active ingredient in Ozempic, semaglutide, is also available in a pill form called Rybelsus. While both medications contain the same drug, their formulations are different and can lead to variations in absorption and potential side effects. Consult with your doctor if you’re interested in exploring different options for semaglutide treatment.
It typically takes several weeks to several months after starting Ozempic to see an improvement in your A1C. Individual results can vary and may be influenced by factors like starting dose, underlying health conditions, and lifestyle habits.
Yes, Ozempic (semaglutide) has been associated with weight loss in clinical studies and is considered more as a secondary benefit in addition to improving glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes. Doctors may prescribe Ozempic off-label for patients who don’t have diabetes. Patients should discuss the potential risks and benefits of off-label use with their healthcare provider.

The starting dose of Ozempic is 0.25mg taken via subcutaneous injection (under the skin) for 4 weeks. If the patient can tolerate the medication then the dosage is increased to 0.5mg weekly for a minimum of 3 months. During this time the effects should be monitored.

Maintenance dose

A maintenance dose of Ozempic is usually between 0.5mg -2mg depending on how the patient responds to their treatment.

The preferred site of injection is the abdomen. Ozempic can be administered subcutaneously into the upper arm or thigh. It’s important to rotate injection sites to avoid potential complications such as pitting, developing lumps or thickening of the skin.

Ozempic is not recommended to be used during pregnancy. Other types of medications may be recommended by doctors to treat diabetes in pregnant women.

You can administer Ozempic with or without food.

It takes approximately 5 weeks for Ozempic to leave your system for someone who has been taking it for a few months. Typically the amount of time it takes for a medication to clear your system is based on how long it has been taken. This is an estimate, and individual elimination rates may vary based on factors like age, kidney function, and other medications being taken.

Yes. If you have an excess of Ozempic injectable pens, they should be refrigerated. The ideal place for storage is the top shelf of your refrigerated and away from cooling elements. Long term storage should be 2-8°C (or 36-47°F). Once in use, it can be stored at room temperature between 15-30°C (or 59-86°F).

Ozempic is available as a prefilled syringe pen and is injected under the skin (subcutaneously) in your stomach (abdomen), thigh, or upper arm. Do not inject OZEMPIC into a muscle (intramuscularly) or vein (intravenously).
Use OZEMPIC 1 time each week, on the same day each week, at any time of the day.

If you miss a dose of OZEMPIC, take the missed dose as soon as possible within 5 days after the missed dose. If more than 5 days have passed, skip the missed dose and take your next dose on the regularly scheduled day.

Ozempic contains semaglutide as its main active ingredient. 1mL solution contains 1.34 mg of semaglutide.

Non-active ingredients include propylene glycol, phenol, disodium phosphate dihydrate and water for injection.

There are no reported drug interactions between Metformin and Ozempic, and many people with diabetes can take both. However, it’s always recommended to ask your doctor about combining Ozempic with your current medications.

If you’re looking for an Ozempic coupon to save money, the following coupons codes are available:

Coupon CodeDetailsSAVINGS
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(maximum of $50 savings)
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Ozempic should be stored in the refrigerator at a temperature between 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) until the first use. However, if Ozempic is not refrigerated before the first use, it can still be used, but there are some important considerations:

Shelf Life: Ozempic is stable at room temperature (up to 77°F or 25°C) for a short period of time, usually up to 56 days. If it has been kept at room temperature beyond this period, it should not be used, and a new pen should be obtained from the pharmacy.

Efficacy: While Ozempic may still be effective if not refrigerated before the first use, it is best to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for storage to ensure its potency. Storing it properly in the refrigerator helps maintain the medication’s stability.

Check for Changes: Before using Ozempic that has been stored at room temperature, check the medication visually. Make sure it appears normal, and there are no visible changes, such as discoloration or particles. If you notice any abnormalities, do not use it.

Follow Instructions: Regardless of storage conditions, always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions for using Ozempic. They will provide you with the appropriate dosage and administration guidelines.

It’s important to note that once you start using a pen, it should be kept at room temperature and used within the recommended timeframe, usually within 56 days.

If you have any concerns about the storage or use of Ozempic, it’s best to consult with your healthcare provider or pharmacist for guidance. They can provide specific advice based on your individual circumstances and the condition of the medication.

Sean Moshrefi, PharmD, MS

Sean Moshrefi, PharmD, MS, is a licensed pharmacist based in California. He holds a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and a Master of Science in Regulatory Sciences from the University of Southern California (USC). With expertise in medical writing and medical communications, Sean adeptly provides written and verbal drug information to healthcare professionals and patients, contributing significantly to the healthcare landscape and empowering healthcare professionals and patients alike with actionable insights.