What are the benefits of switching from Saxenda to Wegovy?
Both Saxenda and Wegovy work in the same way, by mimicking the GLP-1 hormone, which targets the areas of the brain that regulate appetite. They make you feel full, so help regulate your appetite, and therefore aid weight loss.
There are significant differences in doses between Wegovy and Saxenda, as Wegovy is taken weekly, while Saxenda is injected daily. People who feel uncomfortable injecting, have an unpredictable schedule, or who are nervous about needles might prefer a weekly rather than a daily dose.
Trials have shown Wegovy to be around 3 times more effective for weight loss. In a 2022 study that compared the effects of Wegovy and Saxenda on people with obesity showed that those taking semaglutide (Wegovy) lost 15.85 % of their body weight compared to 6.4 % in the liraglutide (Saxenda) group. Both groups combined the treatment with diet and exercise.
The study also showed that 13.5% of those taking semaglutide (Wegovy) discontinued their treatment due to side effects, while 27.6% of those taking liraglutide (Saxenda) stopped taking theirs. So you’re more likely to keep taking Wegovy than Saxenda, and therefore lose more weight.
However, everyone is different, and you might find that Saxenda works better for you than Wegovy.
The side effects of Wegovy and Saxenda are very similar, however overall, studies suggest that semaglutide (Wegovy) is easier to tolerate than liraglutide (Saxenda).
In a randomised trial, 13.5 % of participants in the Wegovy group stopped their treatment because of side effects, compared with 27.6 % of the people taking Saxenda. However, 80 % of people in both groups reported common side effects and gastrointestinal (or stomach and intestine) issues.
Dosages of both medications are increased gradually in order to minimise side effects and to allow you to be aware of any reactions you might have. The slow increase also gives your body a chance to get used to the drug.
If your side effects are the prime reason for switching medication, you might first want to consider a lower dose of Saxenda.
Find more about the side effects of Saxenda here, and Wegovy’s side effects here.