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Study discovers whether diabetes drug reduces heart disease

Study discovers whether diabetes drug reduces heart disease

A new study in progress seeks to understand whether semaglutide, the active ingredient of a drug approved in Brazil for the treatment of Type 2 diabeteshas positive effects in reducing cardiovascular disease in Obese people.

In total, more than 17,000 people took part in the survey around the world – about 600 of them were from Brazil.

The semaglutide Initially, only a treatment for type 2 diabetes was sought, but the benefits of the substance were noted for other conditions, such as obesity and reduced heart complications.

The active principle has some actions in the body that cooperate in weight loss. One of them is to increase the feeling of satiety and reduce appetite. As a result, the patient loses weight. Research has already noticed Weight loss of about 15% After 68 weeks of drug use.

“what should we do A drug so far to treat obesity was inactive. I mean, they have lost quite a bit of weight and have a bunch of side effects,” says Ottavio Rizzi, cardiologist and professor at Unicamp (University of Campinas).

There is also evidence that semaglutide has positive reducing effects Cardiovascular complications In patients with type 2 diabetes, obesity is strongly associated with The development of heart problems By causing fat to build up in the blood vessels.

In a similar way, being overweight also affects the onset of diabetes, Disease that poses a risk of heart complications. “Having diabetes more than doubles the chances of infarction and stroke,” says João Monteiro Ferreira, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SBC (Brazilian Society of Cardiology).

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Therefore, proper treatment of diabetes and obesity means less heart complications.

The relationship between these conditions has already been better explored among medical specialties. One example is the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress, which took place in Barcelona, ​​where events were organized to address the association between diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.

“Between us cardiologists, we didn’t worry about controlling obesity because we didn’t know how to do it. It was limited to endocrinologists, who also didn’t get great results. Now it’s my problem. I have a large number of patients with heart attacks.” Congestive heart Or high blood pressure and those who are obese,” Razi says.

To date, all studies examining the effects of semaglutide have included patients with a positive diagnosis of diabetes. Now, the new investigation – called Select (Effects of semaglutide on heart disease and stroke in patients who are overweight or obese) – wants to take a look at the findings. Cardiac complications In those who are obese alone.

Although there are expectations that semaglutide will also produce cardiac benefits in non-diabetic patients, new scientific evidence is still needed, such as the results of Select, which should be released in late 2023.

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So far, the drug that contains semaglutide as the active ingredient that is marketed in Brazil is the Ozmbic drug. It is only indicated for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.

A request has already been submitted to Anvisa (National Health Surveillance Agency) In order to allow the marketing of wegovy, a version with a different dosage than semaglutide and indicated for Obesity treatment.

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According to Novo Nordisk, the drug maker and sponsor of the Select study, the agency’s analysis of wegovy is expected to be completed by early 2023. Currently, it is only marketed in the United States.

Since there is no authorized treatment yet for obesity, the use of semaglutide for this purpose in the country is considered out Label (When a medicine is prescribed for a purpose other than what appears in the inner leaflet).

Novo Nordisk said in a statement that it “does not endorse or support the promotion of off-label information.”

Rizzi noted a similar situation. “Only what is written is valid. As long as it is not in the inner package leaflet, it is invalid. Even if other countries have already approved it, as long as our regulatory agency does not say so, it is not.”

The journalist traveled at the invitation of Novo Nordisk.