US approves anti-obesity drug Zepbound

US approves anti obesity drug Zepbound

The American Federal Medicines Agency (FDA) authorized on November 8 a treatment for obesity, eagerly awaited by patients who suffer from it. This disease can be linked to certain major causes of death, such as cardiovascular disease, stroke or diabetes.

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The figures are staggering: 40% of American adults suffer from obesity. And over the years, it has become a national cause. The disease is in fact responsible for 200,000 to 400,000 deaths per year in the United States. For comparison, the average obesity rate in France today is 16%, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

During clinical trials, Zepbound – that’s the name of this drug – allowed significant weight loss. And this is thanks to the tirzepatide molecule which has already proven itself against type 2 diabetes. It has in fact been marketed in the United States under the brand Mounjaro since its authorization by the FDA in 2022. Zepbound is now authorized for people suffering from obesity, but also for those who are overweight and have type 2 diabetes, who have high cholesterol levels or who suffer from hypertension.

Do not divert treatment

However, it is not recommended for people who, not being clearly overweight, would like to use it to lose a few extra pounds. For these people, the risks associated with this type of medication can be very great. A recent study of several treatments of this generation shows that they do indeed increase gastrointestinal problems. This is particularly the case for Ozempic used to treat diabetes. This drug caused a stock shortage after becoming all the rage among Internet users for its supposed weight-loss properties.

As for Zepbound, one injection per week is enough. But again, a clarification. While the causes of obesity are multiple and complex, at the heart of the problem is obviously a processed diet and a sedentary lifestyle. This is why, alongside treatment, the FDA recommends a low-calorie diet and physical exercise. Another problem pointed out by the experts: Zepbound will undoubtedly have to be taken over the very long term.

Very expensive

If its effectiveness is proven, the price of the drug set by the Eli Lilly laboratory which produces it at $1,060 per month is very expensive. And it is not expected to be reimbursed by health insurance in the United States. However, the figures show that wider access to these treatments against obesity would be crucial. The laboratory promises to collaborate with federal agencies to help patients who need it. The FDA authorization caused Eli Lilly’s stock to rise 3.2% on the New York Stock Exchange.

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