**Shortage of Novo Nordisk’s Drug Saxenda Sparks Concern**
Novo Nordisk’s drug, Saxenda, is currently facing a shortage due to high demand for weight loss medications. This shortage is affecting the availability of Saxenda until the end of the year, as stated in a notice posted on the US Food and Drug Administration database. While Novo Nordisk is still producing and shipping Saxenda, they have warned about prescription fulfillment issues for the remaining months of 2023 and beyond. The company cites the increasing demand for Saxenda as the primary reason for these supply interruptions.
**Popularity of New Weight Loss Drugs Exacerbates Supply Issues**
In addition to Saxenda, Novo Nordisk has seen a surge in the popularity of its newer drugs Wegovy and Ozempic. Additionally, Eli Lilly & Co.’s diabetes drug, Mounjaro, has also become highly sought after. These medications have gained attention due to studies demonstrating their effectiveness in helping patients lose significant amounts of weight. Among these medications, only Wegovy has received FDA approval for the treatment of obesity.
**Renewed Interest in Saxenda amidst Shortages of Similar Drugs**
While Saxenda works similarly to the newer weight loss drugs, it is known to be less effective and leads to lesser weight loss in patients. However, recent shortages of Wegovy and Mounjaro have renewed interest in Saxenda. Bloomberg Intelligence data reveals that between May and June of 2023, the number of Saxenda prescriptions increased by nearly 30,000, marking the highest monthly jump in the past two years.
**Warnings Against Switching to Saxenda**
Novo Nordisk advises patients considering a switch from Wegovy to Saxenda to proceed with caution. On their Wegovy website, the company states that they cannot guarantee sufficient supply to meet the rising demand for weight management medications. This cautionary message serves as a response to the shortages faced by Wegovy and the subsequent increase in demand for Saxenda.
Overall, the current shortage of Saxenda highlights the challenges faced by the weight loss drug industry in meeting the high demand. The popularity of weight loss medications like Wegovy and Mounjaro, along with the increased interest in Saxenda, underscores the need for manufacturers to enhance their production capabilities and ensure a stable supply of these vital medications.