NHS watchdog dismisses Mounjaro's weight loss treatment for diabetes

Scales for weighing

A spending watchdog claims that the cost-benefit analysis may not support the NHS's recommendation of a new diabetes drug dubbed the "King Kong" of weight loss injections.

Despite recently approving Wegovy, a similar weekly injection, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) says more research is required for Mounjaro.

Both drugs reduce appetite, making users feel full and consume less food.

They aid in controlling blood sugar as well.

The popularity of these treatments has increased as a result of social media posts showing people, frequently celebrities, losing a lot of weight.

Another type 2 diabetes injection called Ozempic, which some people have been using off-label to help them lose weight, has been experiencing ongoing global shortages. The pre-filled pens contain a smaller dosage of semaglutide, the same medication found in Wegovy.

The Mounjaro, also known as tirzepatide, represents good value for money when combined with diet and exercise for adults with type 2 diabetes and a high body mass index, according to the draft NICE guidelines.

Because of commercial sensitivities, the pre-filled pen's NHS price is not publicly known.

New treatment options are required to help people with type 2 diabetes manage their blood glucose levels, according to NICE's Helen Knight. Type 2 diabetes is becoming more common in society.

"Our committee recognizes the potential of tirzepatide, but more research is needed before it can be judged for both clinical and financial efficacy. ".

Before the committee's subsequent meeting, manufacturer Eli Lilly has been asked to provide additional data for review.

According to NICE, this recommendation in England is not meant to have an impact on tirzepatide treatment that was started under the NHS prior to the publication of this guidance.

Individuals receiving care outside the scope of this recommendation are free to keep doing so until they and their NHS clinician decide it is time to stop.

For adults with at least one obesity-related health issue, which can include type 2 diabetes, Wegovy (semaglutide) has been approved for use by the NHS in England.

Although there are no stocks yet, according to the prime minister, some patients in England's general practitioners' offices and specialty weight management clinics may soon be able to access it.

As he unveiled a £40 million pilot program to widen access to the drug, Rishi Sunak said it could be a "game-changer."

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