Saxenda for Weight Loss

Saxenda® is a weight loss medicine that contains the active substance liraglutide. It is similar to a natural occurring hormone ...

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Saxenda® is a weight loss medicine that contains the active substance liraglutide. It is similar to a natural occurring hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) that is released from the intestine after a meal. Saxenda® works by acting on receptors in the brain that control your appetite, causing you to feel fuller and less hungry. This may help you eat less food and reduce your body weight.

Many studies have shown that patients using Saxenda lose significant amounts of weight over several weeks (usually around 10% body fat). ​

Usually, your treatment with Saxenda will start at a low dose which will be gradually increased over the first five weeks of treatment. 

Before beginning your treatment with Saxenda, please ensure you are familiar with how to administer the injections. Please watch this brief instructional video and review the patient information guide on the Saxenda website.

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What is Saxenda?

Saxenda is a daily injection indicated as an adjunct to a reduced-calorie diet, and increased physical activity, for weight management in adult patients

How does it work?

Saxenda contains the drug Liraglutide which is a medicine that falls into the Glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) agonist class of drugs.

GLP-1 is a naturally occurring hormone in the body that is released in response to food intake and acts as a physiological regulator of appetite. Saxenda is 97% similar to naturally occurring GLP-1.

Saxenda works in the hypothalamus, where it interacts with specific neurons involved in the regulation of appetite and food intake. Liraglutide sits on this receptor and causes changes to very important hormones involved in regulating body weight: insulin, leptin, and glucagon.

The effect of this medicine is thought to affect weight loss by the following mechanisms:

  • Reduces Leptin Resistance
  • Improves Insulin Sensitivity
  • Acts as a Glucagon Suppressant
  • Reduces Appetite
  • Increases Metabolism

Saxenda increases feelings of satiety feeling full) and decreases hunger. As a result of its mechanism of action, patients taking Saxenda feel satisfied and eat less food, leading to weight loss.

What are the benefits of taking it?

Liraglutide was originally developed to treat type II diabetes because it can help reduce insulin resistance but was soon found to have a dramatic effect on weight.

Many studies have shown that patients using Saxenda lose significant amounts of weight over several weeks (usually around 10% body fat). ​

In a clinical study of people taking Saxenda for 3 years:

  • 56% achieved significant weight loss at year 1, and
  • Approximately half of these patients maintained weight loss at 3 years when taking Saxenda added to a reduced-calorie meal plan and increased physical activity, compared with people not on the drug.

Reducing your waistline isn’t the only impact of weight loss. Taking off weight and keeping it off may help improve conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels.

How do I use it and its dosage?

Always use this medicine exactly as your prescriber has told you. Check with your doctor, pharmacist, or nurse if you are not sure.

Before beginning your treatment with Saxenda, please ensure you are familiar with how to administer the injections. Please watch this brief instructional video and review the patient information guide on the Saxenda website.

Usually, your treatment with Saxenda will start at a low dose which will be gradually increased over the first five weeks of treatment. Please note that all decisions regarding changes to your dose of Saxenda must be made in consultation with your prescriber to ensure the medicine is working as it should and without adverse effects.  

  • When you first start using Saxenda, the starting dose is usually 0.6 mg once a day, for at least one week.
  • Your prescriber will instruct you to gradually increase your dose by 0.6 mg usually each week until you reach the recommended dose of 3.0 mg once a day.

Your prescriber will tell you how much Saxenda to inject each week. Typically, you will be told to follow the table below, but this regimen may be adjusted by the prescriber to suite your unique clinical circumstances.

Week

Dose injected

Week 1

0.6 mg once a day

Week 2

1.2 mg once a day

Week 3

1.8 mg once a day

Week 4

2.4 mg once a day

Week 5 onwards

3.0 mg once a day

Once you reach the recommended dose of 3.0 mg in week 5 of treatment, keep using this dose until your treatment period ends. Do not increase your dose further.

Your prescriber will assess your treatment on a regular basis.

How and when to use Saxenda

  • Before you use the pen for the first time, you should familiarise yourself with the method of administration. Please see the instructional video HERE and the patient guide on the Saxenda website HERE
    • You can use Saxenda at any time of the day, with or without food and drink.
  • Use Saxenda at about the same time each day – choose a time of the day that works best for you.

Where to inject

Saxenda is given as an injection under the skin (subcutaneous injection).

  • The best places to inject are the front of your waist (abdomen), the front of your thighs or your upper arm.
  • Do not inject into a vein or muscle.

People with diabetes

Tell your doctor if you have diabetes. Your doctor may adjust the dose of your diabetes medicines to prevent you from getting low blood sugar.

  • Do not mix Saxenda up with other medicines that you inject (e.g. insulins).
  • Do not use Saxenda in combination with other medicines that contain GLP-1 receptor agonists (such as exenatide or lixisenatide).

If you use more Saxenda than you should

If you use more Saxenda than you should, talk to a doctor or go to a hospital straight away. Take the medicine pack with you. You may need medical treatment. The following effects may happen:

  • feeling sick (nausea)
  • being sick (vomiting)
  • low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia). For warning signs of low blood sugar, please refer to Patient Information Leaflet contained within each box of Saxenda.

If you forget to use Saxenda

  • If you forget a dose and remember it within 12 hours from when you usually use the dose, inject it as soon as you remember.
  • However, if more than 12 hours have passed since you should have used Saxenda, skip the missed dose and inject your next dose the following day at the usual time.
  • Do not use a double dose or increase the dose on the following day to make up for the missed dose.

If you stop using Saxenda

Do not stop using Saxenda without talking to your prescriber.

If you have any further questions on the use of this medicine, ask your doctor, pharmacist, or nurse.

Side effects & precautions

Like all medicines, this Saxenda (Liraglutide) can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.

 

Serious side effects

  • Some severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) have been reported rarely in patients using Saxenda. You should see your doctor straight away if you get symptoms such as breathing problems, swelling of face and throat and a fast heartbeat.

  • Cases of inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) have been reported uncommonly in patients using Saxenda. Pancreatitis is a serious, potentially life-threatening medical condition.

Stop taking Saxenda and contact a doctor immediately if you notice any of the following serious side effects: Severe and persistent pain in the abdomen (stomach area) which might reach through to your back, as well as nausea and vomiting, as it could be a sign of an inflamed pancreas (pancreatitis).

 

Other side effects

Very common: may affect more than 1 in 10 people

  • Feeling sick (nausea), being sick (vomiting), diarrhoea, constipation – these usually go away after a few days or weeks.

Common: may affect up to 1 in 10 people

  • Problems affecting the stomach and intestines, such as indigestion (dyspepsia), inflammation in the lining of the stomach (gastritis), stomach discomfort, upper stomach pain, heartburn, feeling bloated, wind (flatulence), belching and dry mouth
  • Feeling weak or tired
  • Changed sense of taste
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty sleeping (insomnia). This usually occurs the first 3 months of treatment
  • Gallstones
  • Injection site reactions (such as bruising, pain, irritation, itching and rash)
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia). The warning signs of low blood sugar may come on suddenly and can include: cold sweat, cool pale skin, headache, fast heartbeat, feeling sick, feeling very hungry, changes in vision, feeling sleepy, feeling weak, being nervous, being anxious, confusion, difficulty concentrating and shaking (tremor). Your doctor will tell you how to treat low blood sugar and what to do if you notice these warning signs
  • increase of pancreatic enzymes, such as lipase and amylase.

Uncommon: may affect up to 1 in 100 people

  • Loss of fluids (dehydration). This is more likely to occur at the start of treatment and may be due to being sick (vomiting), feeling sick (nausea) and diarrhoea
  • Delay in the emptying of the stomach
  • Inflamed gall bladder
  • Allergic reactions including skin rash
  • Feeling generally unwell
  • Faster pulse.

Rare: may affect up to 1 in 1,000 people

  • Reduced kidney function
  • Acute kidney failure. Signs may include reduction in urine volume, metallic taste in mouth and easily bruising.

Buying Saxenda online

You can buy Saxenda (Liraglutide) Injections online through one of the UK’s leading online pharmacies, Pharmacy Planet. It's easy and convenient. You will need to fill out a short assessment and the item will be delivered directly to your door. If you want to buy Saxenda Injections online, use Pharmacy Planet, a UK pharmacy you can trust.

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