The Latest on the GLP-1 Weight Loss Medications

We continue looking at the latest headlines in the fascinating and controversial world of GLP-1 weight loss drugs. A lot has been going on in the past few weeks.


Eli Lilly’s GLP-1 weight loss drugs, Zepbound and Mounjaro, are experiencing a supply shortage, similar to competitor Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy. Due to this shortage, Eli Lilly is considering releasing vials of their treatments for consumers capable of self-administering the drug. The #ReleaseTheVials campaign on social media is urging the pharmaceutical company to take this approach for quicker and easier consumer access.

Discussing this issue with Yahoo Finance, “On The Pen Live” Host Dave Knapp said:

“Even though […] you’ve seen them [Eli Lilly] announce major investments in the United States in manufacturing […] they just can’t keep up with 100,000 prescriptions a week. You saw Eli Lilly and Zepbound specifically eclipse Wegovy…

You saw Zepbound eclipse Wegovy for the first time in new prescriptions just a week ago. And there’s just no way they can keep up with that when you consider the complexity of the pens and the manufacturing of these very, very difficult — [Eli Lilly CEO] Dave Rick’s own words — some of the most complex things to manufacture in the country.”

What can curb weight loss on semaglutide?

In another development, a retrospective study coming from the Mayo Clinic investigated the impact of prior use of anti-obesity medications on weight loss outcomes with semaglutide, a GLP-1 receptor agonist, in 305 U.S. patients with overweight or obesity. Among these, 231 were treatment-naive with semaglutide, while 74 had prior exposure to other anti-obesity drugs.

Results showed that treatment-naive patients experienced greater weight loss with semaglutide compared to those with prior exposure to anti-obesity medications. Specifically, at 12 months, the treatment-naive group lost more weight (14.3% vs. 10.6%) and had higher proportions achieving ≥ 15% and ≥ 20% weight loss.

The study suggests that “semaglutide results in more weight loss if patients with overweight or obesity have not previously been treated with anti-obesity medications.” It was published online in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.

Costco gets into the GLP-1 weight loss drugs market

Costco is teaming up with Sesame, an online telemedicine platform, to provide exclusive discounts on prescriptions for GLP-1 weight loss drugs to eligible members. Through Sesame’s marketplace, members can access Costco’s weight loss program for $179, which includes three months of clinical consultations, personalized clinician selection, live video consultations, messaging with clinicians, nutritional guidance, and recommendations.

Patients will be directed to appropriate treatment programs, potentially including medications like Ozempic or Wegovy, based on their medical history and weight loss needs. However, GLP-1s can be expensive without insurance, ranging from $950 to $1,600 per month.

This move by Costco follows similar initiatives by competitors like Amazon and Weight Watchers, indicating a trend toward medically supervised weight loss services. Sesame co-founder and CEO David Goldhill said in the press release:

“Sesame’s unique model allows us not only to make high-quality specialty care like weight loss much more accessible and affordable, but also to empower clinicians to create care plans that are specific to — and appropriate for — each individual patient.”

From “Ozempic face” to “Ozempic baby”

The last item on our news roundup: Women taking weight loss medications such as Ozempic and Mounjaro are experiencing unintended pregnancies, despite using birth control or facing fertility issues. Online platforms like Facebook, Reddit and TikTok have become forums for these women to share their unexpected pregnancy experiences, often dubbed “Ozempic babies” or “Mounjaro babies.”

Reproductive and obesity medicine experts acknowledge this trend, attributing it to weight loss correcting hormonal imbalances and potentially reducing the efficacy of birth control. However, experts strongly caution against using weight loss drugs to conceive, as animal studies suggest these medications may cause miscarriage and birth defects if taken during pregnancy.

While some argue these medications might increase fertility, experts emphasize the importance of discontinuing them at least two months before attempting pregnancy due to potential risks. Dr. Allison Rodgers, an OB-GYN and reproductive endocrinologist at Fertility Centers of Illinois, said:

“It’s true that, from a scientific perspective, these medications may make it easier for people to get pregnant… But people need to be careful because there could be dangerous consequences if taken while pregnant given the drugs can linger in your system.”

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “Weight-loss drug shortage result of ‘unprecedented demand’,” Yahoo Finance, 04/08/24
Source: “Prior Anti-Obesity Drug Use Curbs Weight Loss on Semaglutide,” Medscape, 04/09/24
Source: “Costco will offer prescriptions for GLP-1 weight loss drugs to eligible members,” Salon, 04/08/24
Source: “’Ozempic babies’ are surprising women taking weight loss drugs. Doctors think they know why.,” USA Today, 03/21/24
Image by Total Shape on Unsplash

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

FAQs and Media Requests: Click here…

Profiles: Kids Struggling with Weight

Profiles: Kids Struggling with Obesity top bottom

The Book

OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

Food & Health Resources