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When Changing from Daily to Weekly GLP-1, Make Sure Patient is Clear

May 1, 2018
 

Man, 52 years of age, with obesity and type 2 diabetes, was switched from daily liraglutide (Victoza) 1.8mg to weekly semaglutide (Ozempic) 0.25mg. I was very clear with patient about the switch being from a daily injection to a weekly and that we would be increasing the semaglutide weekly.

Patient started taking semaglutide Friday. I received word from him early Monday morning that he was taking semaglutide 0.25mg daily until we talk again Friday to increase his dose.

I was glad to hear from him so I could tell him to stop the semaglutide until Friday. He had taken a total of 0.75mg, which I was comfortable with since he was on the 1.8 Victoza before the “switch” and he had no untoward side effects.

I asked him to verbalize back to me that Ozempic is a once-weekly medication, that he is not to take anymore until Friday when we talk. He verbalized back to me that “Ozempic is a once-weekly medication, and I will not to take anymore until Friday when we talk.”

Lessons Learned:

  • The pens for liraglutide (Victoza) and semaglutide (Ozempic), although not exactly the same, look very much the same. It is easy for patients to get confused.
  • Liraglutide (Victoza) is a daily GLP-1 agonist,  semaglutide (Ozempic) is a weekly GLP-1 agonist. Teach patients who are switching from liraglutide to semaglutide the difference in dosage between these two medications and to stop the liraglutide before taking semaglutide. For example, take liraglutide Monday. Stop after Monday dose and start semaglutide Tuesday and take every Tuesday.
  • Ask patient to talk back or write back what was just taught.

 

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Medical Editor
Diabetes In Control

 

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