What are Wegovy injections?
Wegovy injections are a weight-loss treatment for adults with obesity that can help you to lose 15% of your starting weight. They help to control your appetite and keep you feeling fuller for longer, making it easier to stick to that reduced-calorie diet. Each injection is loaded into a handy single-use pen which makes taking this treatment simple — no fussing with doses, no needle replacements, and you’ll only need to inject once a week! If you have a BMI of 30 and above and have found that other weight loss treatments haven’t worked for you, Wegovy could be just what you need to hit your weight loss goals.
How to take Wegovy for weight loss
You’ll use Wegovy once a week, using each disposable pen once before discarding it safely. Before injecting this weight loss medication, make sure to wash your hands and check the pen for any damages and the expiration date, then clean the area you’re going to inject with an alcohol swab or soap and water. Remove the pen cap to expose the needle cover and press this end of the pen firmly against your skin to start injecting. Each injection takes around 5 - 10 seconds, you’ll hear a click to tell you that the injection has started and another to say it’s ongoing. Check the yellow bar on the side of the pen to see your progress, once the yellow bar has stopped moving the injection is complete and you can slowly remove the pen from your skin. Do not remove the pen before the yellow bar has stopped moving. You may notice a little blood where you’ve injected your pen, this is totally normal, press down on the area lightly with a cotton ball or a gauze pad to stop the bleeding and clean up. Dispose of each pen safely into a suitable sharps bin after one use.
Where should I inject this treatment?
You can choose from a few different injection sites for Wegovy, and your prescriber may recommend one for you. These sites include:
Your upper legs
Your lower stomach
Your upper arms
You can inject into the same area every time you use this treatment, but you should make sure that you don’t choose the exact same injection spot every time. Make sure to avoid any areas of skin that are bruised, broken, tender, red, or damaged in any way.
What dosage do I need?
When you start taking Wegovy you’ll be prescribed the lowest possible dose (usually 0.25mg a week) and increase strength slowly over time. This process is called titration and it helps your body to adjust to your new medication and reduces side effects. Your health care team will usually review the dose you’re taking every 4 weeks, increasing it once a month until you’re taking the highest possible dose of 2.4mg a week. The key is to keep communicating openly with your prescriber and health care team and follow the dosage instructions they give you carefully.
Your Wegovy dosage plan
How will semaglutide help me to lose weight?
Semaglutide is the active ingredient in Wegovy and it is part of a group of medications called GLP-1 receptor agonists. This means it works by helping you to regulate your appetite, reducing hunger and cravings. It stimulates the production of insulin in your pancreas and also helps to reduce the production of a hormone called glucagon. This combination slows down the absorption of glucose into your system, helping you to feel more satisfied after a meal and feel fuller for longer. By reducing your appetite, Wegovy injections make it easier for you to stick to a calorie-controlled diet, which naturally makes it easier for you to lose weight.
How long do these weight loss injections take to work?
Wegovy injections get to work in your system right away, but that doesn’t mean that the pounds will fall off within a couple of days. Clinical trials of Wegovy have shown that patients typically lose 15% of their starting body weight during their treatment, but how quickly this happens depends on the number of calories you’re eating every day. Wegovy works by helping to control your appetite and reduce food cravings, making it easier for you to stick to the low-calorie diet you’ll need to lose weight. A healthy rate of weight loss is generally considered to be 1 - 2lbs a week, so you may want to use this as a rule of thumb when considering your weight loss goals.
Why do you need to know my BMI?
Wegovy is only suitable for use in people with a BMI (body mass index) of 30 or above, or a BMI of 27 or above in those who have weight-related medical conditions. If your BMI is lower than this, then our prescribers won’t be able to recommend this product as a treatment for you. Starting to take Wegovy when you have a lower BMI could mean that you lose too much weight and become underweight, which can also contribute to some medical conditions. If you’re unsure what your BMI is, you can use the calculator below and enter your current height and weight, typically a BMI between 18.5 - 24.9 is considered healthy.
Is Wegovy the same thing as Ozempic?
Wegovy and Ozempic are two medications which use the same active ingredient for different purposes. They are both manufactured by Novo Nordisk, who holds the patent for both medications at the moment. Ozempic is a medication for patients with type 2 diabetes that helps you to control your blood sugar, and it can be used alone or alongside other medications like insulin or metformin. As they both contain semaglutide, these medications work in the same way, but that doesn’t mean you can use them interchangeably. Ozempic is used in different dose sizes to Wegovy, with Wegovy often being prescribed in higher amounts, so if you’re already taking Ozempic for type 2 diabetes you won’t be able to take Wegovy as well, as this could cause an overdose of the active ingredient.
What is the difference between Wegovy and Saxenda?
Saxenda is another brand of weight loss injection that is very similar to Wegovy. They work in a similar way, but use different active ingredients and have different dosage sizes. Saxenda uses an active ingredient called liraglutide, which is part of the same group of medicines as semaglutide — GLP-1 receptor agonists. Saxenda needs to be injected once a day, whereas Wegovy only needs to be injected once a week. Saxenda pens also need you to set your dose manually and insert a new needle for each dose, Wegovy doesn’t need you to do either of these as each pen is only used once. The final big difference is that Wegovy has been shown to be much more effective than Saxenda in clinical trials. With Saxenda you can lose 5% of your starting weight within 12 weeks of taking its maximum dose, but clinical trials of Wegovy have found that patients lose an average of 15% of their starting weight.
Can I use these weight loss injections with my regular medications?
If you’re using any other medication, including herbal remedies and medicines you obtained without a prescription, you should tell your prescriber about them during your consultation for Wegovy. Some medications can interact when used together, causing unwanted side effects or making your medication less effective. You should especially be sure to tell your prescriber if you are already taking:
Anticoagulants, also known as blood thinners, such as warfarin
Insulin, as your doctor will need to monitor your blood sugar more closely and may change your insulin dose
Any other weight loss medications
Can I take this product if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?
Wegovy is not suitable for use during pregnancy or breastfeeding, as it’s currently unknown whether the semaglutide in this treatment will affect your child while in the womb or whether it will pass into your breastmilk. Many women find that they gain weight during pregnancy, but if you’re worried about yours you should speak with your doctor or healthcare team and ask for advice. They’ll be able to help you work out why you’re gaining weight, (for example, whether it’s caused by cravings or hormonal changes) and help you to make lifestyle choices that could help you reach and stay at a healthy weight.
Can I drink alcohol while I’m taking this treatment?
You can drink alcohol while you’re taking Wegovy, it shouldn’t affect the way this treatment works. However, we always recommend that you drink in moderation and try to drink water or another soft drink between alcoholic drinks to help you stay hydrated. Something else you should look out for is the calorie content in alcoholic drinks. Alcoholic drinks often contain a lot more calories than you might expect, so drinking a lot can interfere with your weight loss simply by increasing your calorie intake.
Do Wegovy pens need replacement needles?
Unlike Saxenda, Wegovy pens don’t need you to replace their needles after each use. This is because Wegovy pens are single-use only, so you won’t need to measure out a dose manually and won’t need to worry about putting a new needle onto your pen. This is one of the reasons that patients prefer this treatment to Saxenda, as you don’t need to manage dosing or needles by yourself, making the whole process simpler.
Is a sharps bin included with this product?
Yes, we can supply sharps bins you can use to safely dispose of your Wegovy pens. When you have completed your consultation with our prescribers, the option to include a sharps bin with your order will be there for you to select. Depending on your order size, we may be able to give you your sharps bin for free, but there may be a charge for smaller orders. Once you have your sharps bin, you will need to contact your local council to organise collection and its safe disposal when your bin is full.
When should weight loss injections not be used?
Wegovy pens are not suitable for use in children and teens under the age of 18. Do not use this product if you are allergic to semaglutide or any of the other listed ingredients. Do not take this treatment if you or any of your family have ever had a type of cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) or an endocrine system condition called Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type II (MEN 2). Tell your prescriber during your consultation if you have:
Depression, suicidal thoughts, or any other mental health issues
Type 2 diabetes
Does semaglutide have any side effects?
Like all medications, semaglutide can have side effects, although not everyone will experience them. If you experience any of the following serious side effects while using Wegovy you should stop use and seek immediate medical help:
Complications of diabetic eye disease, also known as retinopathy, showing symptoms such as changes in vision and other eye problems
Increased risk of low blood sugar in patients with type 2 diabetes, showing symptoms such as dizziness or lightheadedness, sweating, shakiness, vision changes, slurred speech, etc.
Inflammation of the pancreas, showing symptoms such as severe pain in the stomach and back which doesn’t go away
Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, e.g. difficulty breathing or swallowing, swelling of the eyes, face, mouth, tongue or throat, severe rashes, itching or hives
Gallbladder problems, showing symptoms such as upper stomach pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice), a fever, clay-coloured poo
Kidney problems or kidney failure, especially in those who already have kidney problems
Increased heart rate — speak to a doctor right away if you notice your heart racing or pounding in your chest for several minutes
Depression or suicidal thoughts. Pay attention to any changes to your mental health or mood while taking this product and speak to your doctor if any of these choices worry you
Other common side effects of Wegovy you may experience include:
Feeling sick, this will usually go away over time
Low blood sugar, showing symptoms such as a cold sweat, cool pale skin, headaches, a fast heartbeat, feeling sick or very hungry, vision changes, sleepiness or weakness, nervousness, anxiety, confusion, difficulty concentrating, or shaking
Stomach inflammation or gastritis, showing symptoms such as stomach aches, feeling sick or being sick
Acid reflux or heartburn
Constipation (being unable to poo easily)
Burping or farting, gas
An increase of pancreatic enzymes, e.g. lipase, amylase
If you experience these or any other side effects, speak to your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible. For a complete list of potential side effects of this medication please see the patient information leaflet included with your treatment. For more information about reporting the side effects of medication please see the MHRA’s Yellow Card Scheme.
Do I need a prescription for Wegovy?
You do need a prescription for Wegovy in the UK. Our sister company, MyBMI, can provide prescriptions if they think this treatment would be right for you and your condition. Click the button at the top of this page to go to their website and start your consultation, you’ll see a short questionnaire set up by our healthcare team which is designed to help them understand your medical needs. Just like an in-person consultation with your GP, our doctors will assess your answers to their questions and write a prescription for the treatment they think will be best for you. You’ll then be able to pay for your medication and we’ll send it out to you quickly and in discreet packaging.
How to store this product
Store unused Wegovy pens in the refrigerator, at a temperature between 2 - 8 degrees C. Do not freeze. If you need to, a pen that has not had its cap removed can be stored at room temperature (below 30 degrees C) for up to 28 days. Store in original carton away from light. Once you’ve used your pen, discard it safely in an appropriate sharps bin.
This product is a medicine; make sure to speak to your doctor or Chemist4U pharmacist before taking this product if you have an underlying medical problem or are taking any other medicine or complementary therapy. If your symptoms get worse or continue after taking this product, contact us or your doctor. For medical services in your area, please refer to https://www.nhs.uk
If you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, speak to your doctor or our pharmacist before taking this product. If you suffer from any allergies, ask your doctor or our pharmacist if this medicine is right for you.
Store all medicines out of sight and reach of children.
Please read the included leaflet carefully before using this product.
Please contact your GP if appropriate regarding this product.
Helpful Advice on Medication Restrictions & Addiction
For further information on our medication restrictions policy, please click here.
If you are concerned about addiction to 'over the counter' medication, we urge you to visit the below links for professional help and advice:
The active ingredient is semaglutide in 0.25mg, 0.5mg, 1.0mg, 1.7mg, or 2.4mg premeasured doses.
The other ingredients are disodium phosphate dihydrate, sodium chloride, sodium hydroxide/ hydrochloric acid (for pH adjustment), water for injection.
Funding your weight loss treatment
What are the side effects of Wegovy?
What dosage of Wegovy should I take?
How does the semaglutide in Wegovy work?
Semaglutide vs Saxenda
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