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Zepbound Shortage

Zepbound Shortage

What is Zepbound and why patients love it?

Zepbound is a relatively new injectable medication gaining popularity for weight loss. Here’s why people are excited about it:

  • Impressive Results: Clinical trials showed promising weight loss, with some patients losing up to 52 pounds, rivaling weight loss surgery results.
  • Dual Action: Unlike some weight-loss drugs, Zepbound targets two hormones. This dual approach may lead to more significant appetite suppression and improved blood sugar control.
  • Reduced Calorie Intake: By mimicking satiety hormones, Zepbound can help people feel fuller for longer, potentially leading to a natural reduction in calorie intake.
  • Potential Health Benefits: Studies suggest weight loss with Zepbound may improve blood sugar control and reduce the risk of weight-related health problems like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Which Zepbound Strength are not easily available?

  • Zepbound 2.5mg Injection ✔
  • Zepbound 5mg Injection
  • Zepbound 7.5mg Injection
  • Zepbound 10mg Injection
  • Zepbound 12.5mg Injection
  • Zepbound 15mg Injection

Zepbound Shortage Reasons 

The main and foremost reason for weight-loss drug Zepbound shortage is that its facing a surge in demand. Eli Lilly, the manufacturer, underestimated the drug’s popularity and can’t keep up with prescriptions for both diabetes and weight management. While they’re working on expanding production, it won’t be enough to meet current needs until sometime next year of 2025 or more. Some common challenges for the manufacturer may include:

  1. Unprecedented Demand: There has been a significant surge in demand for weight loss drugs, driven by their proven effectiveness and broadening indications for use. This demand has outstripped current manufacturing capacities.

  2. Manufacturing Challenges: Producing weight loss medications like Zepbound which is an injectable drug, involves complex manufacturing processes. Challenges in scaling up these processes to meet demand can lead to shortages.

  3. Supply Chain Issues: Zepbound is supplied in different countries, may be under different trade names and this global supply chain demand can cause raw material shortages, logistics issues, or regulatory challenges. Al these factors will definitely contribute to the problem to United States patients. These issues can delay production and distribution, exacerbating shortages.

  4. Regulatory Delays: Approvals are always needed for expanding manufacturing facilities or changing manufacturing processes can be time-consuming. These regulations may delay responses to increased demand.

  5. Market Dynamics: The entry of new patients in weight loss market and diabetes can suddenly increase the demand, which may not be immediately meetable by existing supply capabilities.

  6. Quality Control and Safety Issues: Zepbound is a drug that needs refrigeration. Therefore ensuring the safety and efficacy of increased production batches, safely and timely redistributing the drug to various drug vendors and then to pharmacies  can also lead to delays if problems are identified during quality checks.

This leaves patients struggling to find their medication and potentially facing weight regain. Please read this news article from CNBC regarding Zepbound shortage

Possible Impact of Zepbound Shortage 

Zepbound shortage has significant impact, affecting various stakeholders from patients to healthcare systems in multiple ways:

  1. Patient Health and Treatment: Patients who rely on Zepbound for weight management and related health issues like type 2 diabetesmay experience setbacks in their treatment plans. The shortage could lead to interrupted treatment, which can cause regression in health gains, increased weight, or a rebound in related health issues.

  2. Increased Healthcare Burden: Interruptions in effective weight management treatments can lead to increased healthcare visits, more intensive medical interventions, and potentially higher healthcare costs in the long term. This is especially true for chronic conditions that are managed through steady medication, where disruptions can lead to complications.

  3. Patient Stress and Anxiety: The uncertainty about time and difficulty in obtaining necessary medication can cause significant stress and anxiety for patients. This emotional strain can be compounded by the potential health repercussions of not being able to maintain their treatment regimen.

  4. Pressure on Healthcare Providers: Healthcare providers are also impacted as they need to manage patient care under these constrained conditions. This might involve spending more time to help patients navigate the shortage by finding alternative pharmacies, adjusting prescriptions based on availability, changing dosages to available ones, or switching to other treatment options that are not as positively impactful on health. All these alternative options adds to their workload and can strain resources.

  5. Economic Impact on Pharmaceutical Companies: While shortages can initially seem to be a demand opportunity for pharmaceutical companies, they can also lead to reputational damage and loss of trust among consumers. Companies like Eli Lilly with Zepbound shortage might face pressure to quickly resolve supply issues to maintain their market position and consumer trust.

The shortage of Zepbound underscores the need for robust supply chain management, strategic foresight in production capacities, and effective communication between pharmaceutical companies, healthcare providers, and patients to mitigate the adverse effects on public health and economic performance.

Zepbound alternatives

Zepbound is a relatively new once-weekly injection medication that has shown promising results for weight loss. However, due to its popularity, there is currently a shortage of Zepbound. If you’re unable to find Zepbound, here are some alternative medications your doctor might be interested in recommending you:

  • Wegovy (semaglutide)

This is another GLP-1 receptor agonist similar to Zepbound, but it targets only one hormone. Wegovy is also FDA-approved for chronic weight management and has been shown to be effective for weight loss. However, Wegovy is also facing supply shortages especially their 0.25mg and 0.5mg which are considered beginners dosages.

  • Saxenda (liraglutide)

Saxenda is also one of the GLP-1 receptor agonist injection that has been FDA-approved for weight loss. It works by increasing satiety and reducing appetite, leading to decreased calorie intake.

  • Mounjaro (dulaglutide)

Mounjaro is a GLP-1 receptor agonist that is FDA-approved for type 2 diabetes, but it can also cause weight loss as a side effect. It’s also injected once weekly. This is a perfect alternative to Zepbound. However being one of the alternatives, Mounjaro is causing severe shortages and it is also produced by Eli Lilly.

  • Ozempic (semaglutide)

Ozempic is the same medication as Wegovy, but it’s FDA-approved for type 2 diabetes, not weight loss. However, like Mounjaro, it can cause weight loss as a side effect.

  • Contrave (naltrexone/bupropion)

Contrave is an oral combination pill that works by regulating appetite and reducing cravings. It is not an injection medication and is taken orally once or twice daily.

  • Qsymia (phentermine/topiramate)

Qsymia is another combination pill that works by increasing feelings of fullness and reducing cravings. It is also taken orally, once daily.

  • Orlistat (Xenical or Alli)

Orlistat works by blocking the absorption of some dietary fat. It is available over-the-counter (Alli) or by prescription (Xenical) and is taken with meals.

Frequently asked Questions and Answers

Is There a Zepbound Shortage?

Yes, there is currently a Zepbound shortage in the United States. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) maintains a drug shortage database, which confirms limited availability for most Zepbound dosages. 

This shortage is due to high demand for the weight-loss drug, exceeding Eli Lilly’s production capacity. 

How long Zepbound shortage will last?

The current shortage of Zepbound is expected to last through at least 2024 and beyond, particularly affecting certain doses. Eli Lilly, the manufacturer of Zepbound, has indicated that the shortages are due to unprecedented demand and challenges in scaling up production to meet this demand. 

They are actively working to increase manufacturing capacity, which should gradually help alleviate the shortages throughout 2024 and beyond. Source

Can you drink on zepbound?

When taking Zepbound (tirzepatide), it’s generally recommended to be cautious with alcohol consumption. While there is no specific contraindication for drinking alcohol while on Zepbound, several considerations should be kept in mind:

  1. Blood Sugar Fluctuations: Alcohol can affect blood sugar levels, potentially leading to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) when combined with Zepbound, which is designed to help manage weight partly by influencing insulin levels.

  2. Dehydration Risks: Zepbound may slow gastric emptying, which can intensify the dehydrating effects of alcohol. It’s crucial to stay hydrated if you choose to drink.

  3. Caloric Intake: Alcohol contains calories that might counteract your weight loss efforts on Zepbound. Additionally, alcohol can lower inhibitions, possibly leading to less disciplined eating habits.

  4. Potential for Increased Side Effects: Although direct interactions between Zepbound and alcohol have not been extensively studied, alcohol might exacerbate side effects such as gastrointestinal discomfort or dizziness.

Moderation is Key: If you decide to drink alcohol while taking Zepbound, it’s best to do so in moderation. Guidelines suggest limiting intake to one drink per day for women and two for men, and never on an empty stomach to avoid an increased risk of hypoglycemia.

Please discuss your alcohol consumption with your healthcare provider, particularly when taking medications like Zepbound, to ensure that your treatment plan is safe and effective.

Zepbound Side effects

Zepbound Side Effects

Great! Let’s talk about Zepbound and its side effects profile in detail here. Zepbound, known generically as tirzepatide, is a medication primarily used for managing type 2 diabetes. It works by mimicking the effects of natural hormones to help control blood sugar levels.

What is Zepbound

Zepbound, known generically as tirzepatide, is a medication primarily approved by FDA on November 8, 2023 for weight management or weight loss. Zepbound in simple terms works by mimicking the effects of natural hormones to help loose weight and also control blood sugar levels.

Zepbound Common Side Effects

These symptoms are usually mild to moderate and tend to improve over time as your body adjusts to the medication.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Nausea & Vomiting

Zepbound (tirzepatide) causing nausea and vomiting is one of the most common side effects. This can be attributed to its mechanism of action, particularly how it interacts with the digestive system and appetite regulation.

When Zepbound stimulates GLP-1 receptors, it can slow gastric emptying, which means food stays in the stomach longer than usual. This slower movement of food can lead to feelings of fullness or discomfort, resulting in nausea.

Nausea is often more pronounced when starting the medication or increasing the dose. As the body adjusts to Zepbound, the severity of nausea typically decreases over time. Some people may have a heightened sensitivity to medications that affect the gastrointestinal system, making them more prone to experiencing nausea.

It’s worth noting that while nausea is a common side effect, it’s usually temporary and manageable.

Diarrhea or Constipation

Another most common side effects of Zepbound are diarrhea or constipation.  These can be attributed to its effects on the gastrointestinal system. These side effects are are related to how the medication influences digestion and the function of the gut.

While slowing down gastric emptying – the rate at which food moves from the stomach to the intestines, can lead to constipation. However, for some individuals, this alteration in digestive process might swing the other way, causing diarrhea.

Changes in Intestinal Motility: The drug’s impact on the gut’s motility (the movement of the intestines that helps process and move food) can vary, leading to either increased or decreased activity. This variation can result in different bowel patterns for different individuals, including both diarrhea and constipation.

Effect on Gut Flora: All medications that affect the gastrointestinal tract can potentially alter the gut flora (the balance of microorganisms in the intestines). Changes in gut flora can lead to symptoms like diarrhea or constipation, although this is a less understood aspect of the medication’s effects.

Individual Differences in Response: People’s bodies can react differently to the same medication, due to factors like individual gut sensitivity, dietary habits, and overall health. This variation can lead to different GI side effects, including diarrhea or constipation.

Dosage and Adjustment Period: When starting Zepbound or changing dosages, the body can take time to adjust, leading to temporary GI symptoms. Often, these symptoms can resolve or become less severe as the body adapts to the medication.

Injection Site Reactions:

Since Zepbound is administered as an injection, some people may experience reactions at the site of injection, such as redness, itching, or swelling.

Injection site reactions typically include redness, swelling, pain, or itching at the site where the medication is injected. These reactions are usually due to the body’s immune response to the injection, mechanical irritation from the needle, or a reaction to the medication’s formula.

They are generally localized and temporary, often resolving within a few days. Rotating injection sites, using proper injection techniques, and possibly applying a cold pack can help reduce these reactions.

Allow Zepbound injection to cool down and let it come to room temperature before injecting. Take out the shot and let it sit at room temperature (RT) for at least 15-30 minutes and then inject accordingly. Coming to room temperature before administering can help in reducing injection site reactions. This practice is often recommended for most injectable medications. 

  • Decreased Appetite and Weight Loss: While this can be a benefit for some patients, it’s important to manage it carefully to ensure nutritional needs are met.
  • Fatigue: Some people might feel unusually tired or fatigued when taking Mounjaro.
  • Dizziness and Headaches: These symptoms can sometimes occur, particularly if blood sugar levels fluctuate.

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Nexlizet Coupon

Nexlizet Coupon, Cost, Side Effects, Hyperlipidemia, Reviews

Nexlizet Generic Name:

Bempedoic acid/Ezetimibe

Nexlizet FDA Approval Date:

February 26, 2020

Nexlizet Dosage Form: 

Tablets

Nexlizet Manufacturer / Company:

Esperion Therapeutics

Nexlizet uses:

Treatment for: High Cholesterol, Familial Heterozygous

What is Nexlizet

Nexlizet is FDA approved recently launched medication used to treat high cholesterol levels. It’s especially aimed at adults with conditions like heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HeFH) or heart disease.

Nexlizet is a combination drug made with two active ingredients: bempedoic acid and ezetimibe.

This medication is particularly beneficial for individuals who have not achieved desired cholesterol levels with diet and other cholesterol-lowering treatments.

How Nexlizet Works

Nexlizet stands out because it uses a dual-action approach to lower cholesterol. It combines two active ingredients: bempedoic acid and ezetimibe. Each of these ingredients works in a different way to reduce cholesterol levels, making Nexlizet a powerful tool in cholesterol management.

1. Bempedoic Acid: Slowing Down Cholesterol Production

The first component of Nexlizet, bempedoic acid, targets the liver, which plays a key role in cholesterol production. It works by inhibiting an enzyme called ATP Citrate Lyase. This enzyme is essential for cholesterol synthesis in the liver. By blocking this enzyme, bempedoic acid effectively slows down the liver’s ability to produce cholesterol. This reduction in cholesterol production is a crucial step in lowering overall cholesterol levels in the body.

2. Ezetimibe: Reducing Cholesterol Absorption

The second component, ezetimibe, works differently. It focuses on the intestines, where it blocks a specific transporter called Niemann-Pick C1-Like 1 (NPC1L1). This transporter is responsible for absorbing cholesterol from the diet. By inhibiting NPC1L1, ezetimibe reduces the amount of cholesterol absorbed from the food you eat. This means less dietary cholesterol enters your bloodstream, further helping to lower your total cholesterol levels.

The Combined Effect of Nexlizet

When bempedoic acid and ezetimibe are used together, as in Nexlizet, they offer a comprehensive approach to lowering cholesterol. Bempedoic acid reduces the liver’s cholesterol production, and ezetimibe decreases the amount of cholesterol absorbed from your diet. This dual-action effectively lowers LDL cholesterol (often referred to as ‘bad’ cholesterol) and helps manage cholesterol levels more effectively than either ingredient alone.

Nexlizet Side Effects

Nexlizet isn’t immune to side effects and definitely come with some common and some serious side effects. Although not everyone faces these side effects and results vary from person to person. The most common side effects include:

Common Side Effects

  1. Symptoms of the Common Cold or Flu: Such as a runny nose, sore throat, or fever.
  2. Back Pain: Discomfort or pain in the back area.
  3. Bronchitis: Inflammation of the bronchial tubes, leading to coughing and difficulty breathing.
  4. Anemia: A condition where you have fewer red blood cells than normal, which can cause tiredness and weakness.
  5. High Uric Acid Levels: This can lead to gout, a type of arthritis that causes joint pain, especially in the toes.
  6. Diarrhea: Frequent loose or watery bowel movements.
  7. Muscle Spasms: Sudden, involuntary muscle contractions.
  8. Stomach Pain: Discomfort or pain in the abdominal area.
  9. Pain in the Shoulder, Legs, or Arms: Aching or discomfort in these areas.
  10. Increased Liver Enzymes: This can indicate liver problems and may require monitoring by your doctor.
  11. Fatigue: Feeling unusually tired or lacking energy.

Serious Side Effects

While less common, some serious side effects can occur, including:

  1. Gout: Particularly in people who have had it before. Symptoms include severe foot pain, particularly in the toe joint, swelling, and redness.
  2. Tendon Rupture or Injury: Tendon problems can happen, especially in people over 60, those taking certain antibiotics (fluoroquinolones), steroids, or those with kidney problems.

Who should not Use Nexlizet or use Precautions

Nexlizet may not be suitable for everyone. Here are some key groups of people who should either not use Nexlizet or use it with caution:

  1. People with a Known Allergy: Anyone who has a known allergy to bempedoic acid, ezetimibe, or any other component of Nexlizet should avoid using this medication.

  2. Pregnant Women: The safety of Nexlizet during pregnancy has not been established. Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should discuss the risks and benefits of Nexlizet with their healthcare provider.

  3. Breastfeeding Mothers: It is not clear whether Nexlizet passes into breast milk. Nursing mothers should consult their healthcare provider to weigh the potential risks and benefits before taking this medication.

  4. Individuals with Liver Problems: Since Nexlizet can affect liver enzymes, those with pre-existing liver conditions should use this medication cautiously. Regular monitoring of liver function might be necessary.

  5. People with Severe Kidney Disease: Patients with severe renal impairment may need to be cautious, as the medication could potentially worsen their condition.

  6. Older Adults, Especially Over 60: Older adults, particularly those over 60, may have an increased risk of tendon rupture or injury when using Nexlizet. This risk may be higher in those taking certain types of antibiotics or steroids.

  7. Patients with a History of Gout: Since Nexlizet can increase uric acid levels, individua