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Mounjaro vs Ozempic

Drug facts and comparison

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Medically reviewed by  Jamie Winn, PharmD

Uses

  • In combination with diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus
  • Type 2 diabetes
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Summary

Brand name: Mounjaro
Brand name: Ozempic
Manufacturer: Eli Lilly
Manufacturer: Novo Nordisk
Active ingredient: tirzepatide
Active ingredient: semaglutide
Indication: In combination with diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus
Indication: Type 2 diabetes
Frequency of injection: Once weekly
Frequency of injection: 0.25mg once weekly, 0.5mg once weekly, 1mg once weekly
Duration of action: Once weekly
Duration of action: 0.25mg once weekly, 0.5mg once weekly, 1mg once weekly
Injection method: Subcutaneous injection
Injection method: Injection under the skin (subcutaneous injection) using a pre-filled Ozempic Pen

Side Effects

Most common

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea, decreased appetite
  • Constipation, indigestion, abdominal pain

More serious

  • Possible thyroid tumors, including thyroid cancer
  • Inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Kidney problems
  • Severe stomach problems
  • Changes in vision
  • Gallbladder problems

Most common

  • Feeling sick
  • Being sick (vomiting)
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach (abdominal) pain
  • Constipation

More serious

  • Thyroid tumors and a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma
  • Kidney problems, including kidney failure
  • Inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • Severe allergic reactions
  • Changes in vision
  • Very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)

Drug Interactions

Severe interactions
  • Antibiotics for bacterial infections such as gatifloxacin
  • Bexarotene used to treat skin cancer
Serious interactions
  • Any other diabetes medications, like insulin or sulfonylureas
  • Diuretics, taken to make you lose water and salt, usually to treat high blood pressure – bumetanide, furosemide
  • Corticosteroids such as cortisone and prednisolone
  • Beta 2-stimulants, taken to treat asthma – salmeterol
  • Estrogen-containing drugs including birth control and hormone replacements
  • HIV protease inhibitors – atazanavir, indinavir, ritonavir
  • Antibiotics – clarithromycin
  • Antipsychotics – clozapine
Moderate interactions
  • Steroids used topically (on the skin) such as betamethasone, clobetasol, hydrocortisone, and mometasone
Severe Interactions
  • Antibiotics for bacterial infections such as gatifloxacin
  • Bexarotene used to treat skin cancer
Serious interactions
  • Any other diabetes medications, like insulin or sulfonylureas
  • Diuretics, taken to make you lose water and salt, usually to treat high blood pressure – bumetanide, furosemide
  • Corticosteroids such as cortisone and prednisolone
  • Fenofibrate, taken to lower blood triglyceride levels
  • Beta 2-stimulants, taken to treat asthma – salmeterol
  • Antidepressants, including monoamine oxidase inhibitors and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors – phenelzine, selegiline, sertraline
  • Disopyramide, taken to treat heart rhythm problems
  • Estrogen containing drugs including birth control and hormone replacements
Moderate Interaction
  • Steroids used topically (on the skin) such as betamethasone, clobetasol, hydrocortisone, and mometasone

Warnings

You should not use Mounjaro if you:

  • Are allergic to the active ingredient tirzepatide
  • Are allergic to any of the other ingredients in Mounjaro

You should talk to your doctor before using Mounjaro if you:

  • Are taking any of the medications that could interact with Mounjaro
  • Have or have had problems with your pancreas or kidneys
  • Have severe problems with your stomach
  • Have a history of diabetic retinopathy
  • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
  • Are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed

You should not use Ozempic if you:

  • Are allergic to the active ingredient semaglutide
  • Are allergic to any of the other ingredients in Ozempic
  • Have Type 1 diabetes (Ozempic is for Type 2 diabetes only)
  • Have an endocrine system condition called multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2)
  • Have or anyone in your family has had a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC)
  • Have diabetic ketoacidosis
  • Are under 18 years of age

You should talk to your doctor before using Ozempic if you:

  • Are taking any of the medications that could interact with Ozempic
  • Have or have had any problems with your pancreas
  • Have or have had any problems with your kidneys
  • Have a history of diabetic retinopathy
  • Are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant
  • Are breastfeeding or are planning to breastfeed

Dosage

Once weekly

0.25mg once weekly
0.5mg once weekly
1mg once weekly

Cost

4 weeks treatment of Mounjaro will typically cost around $975

2 mg/1.5 ml pre-filled Ozempic Pen costs $899 on average for 1.5 milliliters

FAQs

Mounjaro and Ozempic are brand names for prescription drugs used as an adjunct to diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Here we will explain how they work, their similarities and differences, their side effects, and more. This should provide you with the basics to better understand your options.

What is Mounjaro?

Mounjaro is an FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approved medication manufactured by Eli Lilly and Co. Mounjaro mimics 2 types of incretin hormones produced by the human body. It is classed as a GIP (glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide) and GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1) receptor agonist. GIP decreases food intake and increases energy expenditure which causes weight loss. When taken with a GLP-1 receptor agonist, it may result in greater positive effects on blood glucose and body weight.

Mounjaro is used to treat adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus. It is not for use in people with type 1 diabetes, pancreatitis, or to treat children under 18 years of age.

FDA approval for Lilly’s Mounjaro was based on the SURPASS study, which compared Mounjaro with Ozempic, insulin glargine, semaglutide 1 mg, and insulin degludec. Participants who took Mounjaro experienced an average reduction in hemoglobin A1c, HbA1c (an indicator of blood sugar level). Participants who took a placebo saw an average increase in A1C levels.

Mounjaro dosage

Mounjaro is available in injection form, in the following doses: 2.5 mg/0.5 mL, 5 mg/0.5 mL, 7.5 mg/0.5 mL, 10 mg/0.5 mL, 12.5 mg/0.5 mL, or 15 mg/0.5 mL single-dose pens.

Mounjaro is injected subcutaneously in the abdomen, thigh, or upper arm once weekly, with or without food. If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as possible within 96 hours after the missed dose. If more than 4 days have passed, skip the missed dose and take your next dose on the regularly scheduled day.

Use Mounjaro alongside dietary changes and exercise to improve glycemic control and always speak with a healthcare professional about any changes to your dose so they can monitor and evaluate your condition.

What is Ozempic?

Ozempic is an FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) approved medication manufactured by Novo Nordisk Inc. It is a medication given to adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus to:

  • Lower blood sugar (glucose) levels, when used alongside exercise and diet changes
  • Reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events, like high blood pressure, heart attacks, and strokes, in people who have heart disease

The active ingredient in Ozempic is called semaglutide. It is classed as a GLP-1 agonist. Unlike many other treatments for type 2 diabetes, semaglutide is not a type of insulin, it’s a human hormone that acts on different parts of your body. Semaglutide encourages your pancreas to produce more insulin, helping to lower your blood sugar after you’ve eaten. It also appears to increase the growth of the cells in your pancreas that produce insulin (beta-cells).

Novo Nordisk manufactures a higher-dose weight loss medication version of Ozempic called Wegovy for obesity patients. It is expected that Lilly may do the same with Mounjaro.

Ozempic dosage

Ozempic is available in injection form. You take it by injecting it under your skin (subcutaneous injection), using a pre-filled pen. The medication is long-lasting so you usually take it once per week. As it’s a non-insulin medication, your doctor may prescribe Ozempic alongside insulin. Make sure you always use your Ozempic as directed by your doctor. Ozempic is used on its own whereas Bydureon is used with other medications such as metformin or sulfonylurea.

Common side effects of Mounjaro and Ozempic

The most common side effects of Mounjaro in clinical trials include:

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Gastrointestinal – diarrhea, decreased appetite, constipation, indigestion, abdominal pain

More serious side effects of Mounjaro include:

  • Possible thyroid tumors, including thyroid cancer – do not use Mounjaro if you or any of your family have ever had a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), or if you have an endocrine system condition called Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2)
  • Inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis) – symptoms include severe pain in your stomach area that will not go away, with or without vomiting
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) – Your risk for low blood sugar may be increased if you use Mounjaro with another diabetes medication such as a sulfonylurea or insulin
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Kidney problems
  • Severe stomach problems
  • Changes in vision
  • Gallbladder problems

The most common side effects of Ozempic in clinical trials include:

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Stomach (abdominal) pain
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

More serious side effects of Ozempic include

  • An increased risk of thyroid tumors, including cancerous tumors
  • Kidney problems, including kidney failure
  • Severe allergic reactions to the medication that can cause itching, rashes, swelling, and difficulties breathing
  • Inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • Changes in your vision
  • Very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)

These aren’t all the side effects Mounjaro or Ozempic can cause. You can find more details in the patient leaflet that comes with your medication. If you have any concerns about side effects, talk to your physician or pharmacist.

Mounjaro and Ozempic drug interactions

Mounjaro can interact with other medications. These include:

  • Insulin secretagogue – sulfonylurea or Insulin
  • Oral medications
  • Orally administered hormonal contraceptives

Ozempic can interact with other medications. These include:

  • Anticoagulants like warfarin
  • Insulin – Ozempic can be used alongside insulin, but your doctor may change the dose of insulin you take and/or how often you take insulin
  • Any other diabetes medications you take to treat type 2 diabetes

Mounjaro and Ozempic can interact with other medications. This can change how Mounjaro and Ozempic and other medications work and can make side effects more likely. Tell your prescribing physician about all your drugs, including vitamins and dietary supplements.

Mounjaro and Ozempic contraindications

You should not use Mounjaro if you:

  • Are allergic to the active ingredient tirzepatide
  • Are allergic to any of the other ingredients in Mounjaro

Talk to your doctor before using Mounjaro if you:

  • Are taking any of the medications that could interact with Mounjaro
  • Have or have had problems with your pancreas or kidneys
  • Have severe problems with your stomach
  • Have a history of diabetic retinopathy
  • Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant – If you take oral birth control pills by mouth, you may be recommended another type of birth control for 4 weeks after you start Mounjaro and for 4 weeks after each increase in your dose
  • Are breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed. It is not known if Mounjaro passes into your breast milk

You should not use Ozempic if you:

  • Are allergic to the active ingredient semaglutide, dulaglutide, or liraglutide
  • Are allergic to any of the other ingredients in Ozempic
  • Have had, or anyone in your family has had, a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC)
  • Have an endocrine system condition called multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2)
  • Have pancreatitis
  • Have type 1 diabetes (Ozempic is for type 2 diabetes only)
  • Are under 18 years of age

Talk to your doctor before using Ozempic if you:

  • Have had any problems with your pancreas or kidneys
  • Have ever had diabetic retinopathy
  • Are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant
  • Are breastfeeding or are planning to breastfeed

Other drugs for diabetes mellitus

If you have any concerns about Mounjaro or Ozempic side effects, talk to your physician, or pharmacist for medical advice. Also inform your healthcare provider about any medical conditions, supplements, and over-the-counter meds you are taking. You are also encouraged to report side effects to the FDA: visit http://www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

The content on this website is intended for information purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice. The information on this website should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always speak to your doctor regarding the risks and benefits of any treatment.
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