“The power of the pen” has taken on new meaning as one of the latest tools in the battle of the bulge is a device that resembles a pen but contains an FDA-approved prescription drug that reduces one’s appetite resulting in weight loss. Saxenda is intended for those with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 though it is also appropriate for those with a BMI of 27 who also have a weight-related medical problem (e.g., hypertension, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, etc), said board-certified bariatric surgeon Michael Russo, M.D. of Smart Dimensions in Fountain Valley, Calif.
“Though Saxenda has been on the market for a few years, it only recently is gaining in popularity as it has proven both safe and effective,” said Russo, who said that it should be used in tandem with a reduced-calorie meal plan and increased physical activity. “It works by mimicking a hormone that the body already produces (glucagon-like-peptide) whose purpose is to regulate appetite. Taken daily, Saxenda activates those same areas of the brain so dieters don’t eat as much and the pounds drop. It not only helps in shedding excess weight, but in keeping it off.”
Russo’s colleague at Smart Dimensions, board-certified bariatric surgeon Mir B. Ali, M.D. says that there may be some side effects, the most common of which is nausea but that typically decreases over time. Other reported side effects including diarrhea, constipation and vomiting can be minimized by adjusting the dosage.
“As new weight loss procedures and medications come on the market, we like them to stand the test of time before prescribing them to our patients so we can determine their efficacy, whether or not there are any side effects and what the long-term success ratio is,” said Ali. “Saxenda is proving to be a valuable tool in our arsenal.”
Smart Dimensions is a full-service bariatric practice dedicated to offering patients a wide range of state-of-the-art weight-loss options and the support they need to maintain that loss. For those carrying100+ excess pounds, dieting is successful in only 1% of cases, so surgery is often an effective option. In addition to advanced surgeries like the gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, robotic sleeve and now VBLOC, nonsurgical alternatives include gastric and Obalon balloons and Sculpsure. The Smart Dimensions team also make sure that patients receive support and education, as well as weight-loss supplements and books so that they can maintain their newfound lean figures.
For more information, call (714) 861-4666 or visit www.smartdimensions.com.