Weight Loss Drug Helps Half of Teens in Study Tackle Obesity

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May 19, 2023 -- Nearly half of teens fixed nan weight nonaccomplishment supplier semaglutide (Wegovy) managed to suffer capable weight to driblet beneath nan objective period for obesity, a caller study shows. 

By comparison, only 12.1% of adolescents pinch obesity fixed a placebo successful nan 68-week proceedings dropped beneath nan threshold. 

Semaglutide belongs to a people of narcotics known arsenic GLP-1s because they mimic nan effects of glucagon-like peptide 1, a hormone made successful nan gut that helps group consciousness full.  

The study, called STEP TEENS (Semaglutide Treatment Effect successful People pinch Obesity), besides shows that 74% of group successful nan study shifted down by astatine slightest 1 assemblage wide index, aliases BMI,  category aft receiving a once-weekly injection of nan supplier compared to 19% of those connected placebo. 

“In a applicable sense, we spot that semaglutide reduced weight to a level beneath what is defined arsenic objective obesity successful astir 50% of nan teens successful our trial, which is historically unprecedented pinch treatments different than bariatric surgery," said Aaron Kelly, MD, co-director of nan Center for Pediatric Obesity Medicine astatine nan University of Minnesota successful Minneapolis, who presented nan latest information connected Thursday astatine nan European Congress connected Obesity successful Dublin, Ireland. 

There was astir a 23-fold higher chance of a teen dropping beneath nan obesity period erstwhile utilizing semaglutide, compared to placebo, he said. 

This analysis, published in nan diary Obesity on Wednesday, follows the publication past autumn of nan main results of nan study successful nan New England Journal of Medicine, which showed semaglutide helps adolescents suffer weight.

The supplier was approved by nan FDA successful January for nan curen of obesity successful those aged 12 and over.  

Grace Malley, PhD, pinch nan Child & Adolescent Obesity Service, Children's Health Ireland, successful Dublin, said nan teens' entree to broad wellness attraction is basal for nan due curen of obesity. 

"Treatment requires a long-term, multidisciplinary chronic-care approach, and usually erstwhile curen stops, nan biologic mechanisms driving nan obesity statesman again to thrust nan buildup of [fatty] tissue,” she said. This intends that “long-term curen including nutrition therapy, workout … behavioral support, and slumber therapy needs to beryllium disposable to families successful operation pinch pharmacotherapy and surgical involution wherever required."

"The results of nan STEP TEENS study correspond a promising improvement for nan curen of teen obesity and for associated complications related to liver function," Malley said. 

Exercise a Part of nan Plan

In this newest study of nan STEP TEENS trial, nan authors examined nan effect of semaglutide connected moving 134 adolescents from 1 BMI class to another, including dropping beneath nan obesity period into nan overweight aliases normal weight category; 66 teens were fixed a placebo.

All participants besides received nutritional counseling and a extremity of 60 minutes of moderate- to high-intensity beingness activity per day.

"After 68 weeks not a batch happened [in placebo participants], however, 12.1% of placebo participants did driblet beneath nan obesity period into overweight aliases normal-weight categories," said Kelly. 

But referring to group connected semaglutide, "a full of 45% of patients connected semaglutide dropped beneath nan objective BMI trim constituent for obesity, specified that 19.5% dropped into nan overweight class and 25.4% reduced their BMI into nan normal weight category," he said. 

While not "statistically significant," Kelly pointed retired that "females tended to respond amended to semaglutide, likewise younger adolescents, and mediate assemblage weights tended to respond amended to nan drug, and location was a akin shape pinch obesity classes."

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