Oral Version of Injectable Type 2 Drug Now Available
For people with type 2 diabetes, an oral version of the injectable drug semaglutide (Ozempic) is now available. Called Rybelsus, the Novo Nordisk medication works the same way as the injectable version: It mimics a hormone called GLP-1, which is often reduced in people with type 2 diabetes. In doing so, the drug slows digestion, prevents the liver from making too much glucose, and helps the pancreas produce more insulin when needed. In studies, oral semaglutide lowered blood glucose levels when used alone and when combined with other glucose-lowering medication. If you currently inject semaglutide, or if you’ve been avoiding using it due to a fear of needles, discuss the oral version with your doctor. And be sure to ask about the specific instructions for taking the medication because they play a role in its effectiveness.
Source: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, announced online Sept. 20, 2019