Medical Drugs | Diabetes Lawsuit

Wegovy® Risks

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Wegovy® is a popular weight-loss drug being prescribed to some people struggling with weight management issues. Despite its popularity and approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the drug has also allegedly harmed a growing number of people.

Below are some alleged Wegovy risks you should be aware of if you’ve taken this weight-loss medication.

Wegovy: What it is and how it’s approved to be used

Wegovy is an FDA-approved type of semaglutide produced by Novo Nordisk. Semaglutide—also prescribed as Ozempic®—was originally developed to help people with Type 2 diabetes. The drug is a glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1RA), which acts like the GLP-1 hormone. This hormone plays a role in regulating blood sugar levels.

As semaglutide can also suppress appetite, Ozempic had been prescribed for off-label use to induce weight loss. Novo Nordisk eventually sought FDA approval to produce Wegovy as a weight-loss medication for people with obesity.

The FDA approved Wegovy in 2017 for the treatment of obesity or for people who are overweight with certain risk factors.

Failure to use the medicine as prescribed by a doctor may increase the risk of adverse events or other complications.

Alleged risks of Wegovy

While all medicines have a risk of side effects, many people have reported experiencing unexpected adverse events after using Wegovy. These include:

  • Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)/Pulmonary Embolism (PE) (not on warning label)
  • Gastroenteritis (not on warning label)
  • Gastroparesis (Stomach Paralysis) (not on warning label)
  • Gallbladder disease (added to warning label in March 2022)
  • Ileus (Intestinal Obstruction) (added to warning label in September 2023)
  • Intraoperative pulmonary aspiration (not on warning label)
  • Pancreatic Cancer (not on warning label)

Gastroenteritis

Gastroenteritis is a potentially serious health condition in which people may experience many symptoms of intestinal discomfort. These symptoms include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Vomiting

For older people or people with compromised immune systems, gastroenteritis may be life-threatening.

People have reported experiencing gastroenteritis after using Wegovy, according to the FDA Adverse Events Reporting Systems (FAERS). In 2023, dozens of people were reported to the FDA as being hospitalized for gastroenteritis after using Wegovy.

Gastroparesis

Gastroparesis is a disorder that reduces or stops the flow of food from the stomach to the small intestine. A person with gastroparesis may experience the following symptoms:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Abdominal pain
  • Acid reflux
  • Altered blood sugar levels
  • Lack of appetite
  • Malnutrition
  • Nausea
  • Quickly feeling full from little food
  • Vomiting
  • Weight loss

Research suggests a possible link between Wegovy’s active ingredient, semaglutide, and gastroparesis. The use of GLP-1RAs like semaglutide may cause a change in symptoms for people with pre-existing gastroparesis. Treatment for gastroparesis is limited, and the long-term efficacy of treatments is not known. There is some evidence to suggest that discontinuing GLP-1RAs may help alleviate symptoms. Do not stop taking a prescribed medication without speaking to a medical professional first.

Motley Rice represents many people who have been hospitalized after being hurt by prescription and over-the-counter drugs. Learn more about one client’s experience with Wegovy here.

Intestinal obstruction (ileus)

Intestinal obstruction happens when food or stool cannot move through the intestines. Symptoms of intestinal obstruction include:

  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Inability to pass gas
  • Severe abdominal pain or cramping
  • Swelling of the abdomen
  • Vomiting

People have reported intestinal obstruction after using Wegovy to the FAERS. Reports for intestinal obstruction involving Wegovy go back to 2021. In September of 2023, the FDA added ileus to the warning label for Wegovy due to the high rates of hospitalization and seriousness of intestinal blockages.

Contact a Wegovy lawyer today

If you or a loved one experienced an adverse event after taking Wegovy, you may be eligible to file a claim against Novo Nordisk, the manufacturer of Wegovy and Ozempic.

Complete this webform or call 1.800.768.4026 to contact attorney Sara Couch for more information or to discuss a potential Wegovy claim.

FAQs about Wegovy risks

What is Wegovy’s cancer risk?

There is an increased risk that people may develop thyroid cancer as a result of using Wegovy or other semaglutide-based drugs.

The FDA requires that semaglutide products contain a boxed warning on their packaging to warn consumers about the risk of thyroid cancer. A boxed warning is the FDA’s most serious warning to consumers that a drug may be linked to an increased risk of serious or life-threatening conditions.

What you can do about potential risks of Wegovy

If you’re concerned about potential risks of Wegovy, you should speak with your doctor about how to transition off of it. Because it is a prescription drug, you should not discontinue using it without first talking to your doctor. You may experience other complications from discontinuing Wegovy improperly.

What to do if you’ve experienced an adverse event from Wegovy

Adverse complications can be severe and life-altering. If you’ve experienced any of the above conditions, or any others, you may be eligible to file a Wegovy lawsuit.

A Wegovy lawsuit can allow you to pursue justice from the manufacturer and potentially be compensated for:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Healthcare expenses
  • Lost wages

Speaking with a lawyer who has experience handling litigation against medical manufacturers can help you understand your legal options.

Our medical drug litigation experience

Our medical attorneys have represented thousands of patients seriously hurt by dangerous prescription and over-the-counter drugs. We understand that as a patient or family member, your knowledge of your or a loved one’s medications may be limited.

If you believe a medicine made you sick or hurt you, our attorneys have the resources needed to investigate thoroughly and:

  • Identify potentially harmful medicines
  • Investigate if the medicine hurt you
  • Review the medicine manufacturer’s compliance with FDA regulations
  • Review the adequacy of the manufacturer’s warning to you about potential side effects
  • Recognize other issues that could affect your potential claim

Learn more about our medical drug experience here.

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