Mercy Family Clinic
Family Medicine Practice & Medical Weight Loss Clinic located in Dallas, TX
About two-thirds of American adults are carrying excess weight. Being overweight or obese poses health risks, but it can also make participating in your favorite activities a challenge. At Mercy Family Clinic, Ebere Azubuike, MD, offers medical weight loss programs for people living in Dallas, Texas, and nearby communities. If you’ve been unsuccessful in losing weight in the past, medical weight loss could be what you need to achieve your goals and improve your health. Call the clinic for an appointment today.
Medical Weight Loss Q & A
In June 2021, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved semaglutide (Wegovy) injection (once weekly) for chronic weight management in adults with obesity or overweight with at least one weight-related condition (such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or high cholesterol), for use in addition to a reduced calorie diet and increased physical activity. This under-the-skin injection (subcutaneous) is the first approved drug for chronic weight management in adults with general obesity or overweight since 2014. The drug is indicated for chronic weight management in patients with a body mass index (BMI) of 27 or greater who have at least one weight-related ailment or in patients with a BMI of 30 or greater.
Originally used for diabetes and sold under the name Ozempic, a higher dose of the same drug was evaluated for weight loss. The results were dramatic, with the average individual losing 15(+) % of their body weight during the clinic trial.
How it works: Semaglutide works by mimicking a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) that targets areas of the brain that regulate appetite and food intake; it is a powerful appetite suppressant. It also works by increasing the production of insulin and appears to enhance growth of β cells in the pancreas, which are the sites of insulin production. Additionally, it inhibits glucagon, which is a hormone that increases blood sugar. It has been known to aid not only in weight loss, but helps to lower glucose levels in those who are pre-diabetic or who have type 2 diabetes.
- Delays stomach emptying, leading to a feeling of fullness and smaller meal size
- Slows intestinal motility
- Lowers blood sugars, in part by reducing the production of sugar in the liver
- Stimulates insulin secretion by the pancreas
We start at a low dose which can be increased gradually over 16 to 20 weeks to a max of 2.4 mg weekly. Not all patients will need the max of 2.4 mg weekly though; it is common for patients to have great success with minimal side effects around 0.25 - 1 mg weekly. we have seen an average of 2 - 4 pounds weekly weight loss when combined with proper diet and exercise.
Common Side Effects: Mild fatigue, intermittent nausea, constipation, and diarrhea. This is not a full list of possible side effects, but the most common we have gotten feedback on. Some are able to be prevented based on water intake and nutrition choices.
What to Expect: For your initial visit, you will need to schedule an appointment with our office. Upon arriving for your appointment, you will have a little paperwork to complete and then you will have your consultation with our Provider, who will use his discretion (based on the FDA recommendations for treating obesity) to determine if semaglutide is a safe and good option for you. He will carefully screen you by evaluating your past medical history, any current medications you take, your vital signs, and your body mass index (BMI).
You are NOT a good candidate for semaglutide if you have any of the following: diabetic retinopathy, low blood sugar, decreased kidney function, pancreatitis, medullary thyroid cancer (or a family history of medullary thyroid carcinoma), or multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2.
Since the semaglutide injection does not help increase energy or boost metabolism, we recommend pairing it with either a vitamin b-12 injection or our lipotropic injections.
We also use other medications such as Adipex (phentermine), Qsymia, and Contrave in our weight loss program.