The Internet is wild. Online content spreads quickly. A TikTok influencer recommended Ozempic (semaglutide) for weight loss. Australians began buying diabetes medicine in bulk when the video went viral, causing a shortage.

Therapeutic Goods Administration confirmed medicine shortages with various medical groups. The growing demand is attributed to extensive prescribing for obesity treatment, for which Ozempic is not suggested. The scarcity affects Ozempic users with type 2 diabetes.

Wegovy, a semaglutide injection for adults, increased the popularity of an injectable medicine used to treat type 2 diabetes. The drug was approved for adults with obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or high cholesterol.

Social media influencers then tested it for weight loss and posted reviews online. Despite not being licensed for weight loss in Australia, the public began taking it, generating a shortage.

Dr. Karen Price, president of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, said, “There are plenty of risks people need to be aware of, but most importantly, it’s not yet licensed in Australia or the UK for weight reduction.” Off-label use is preventing people with diabetes from getting the medicine.

According to specialists, weight loss is a lifestyle, not a single medicine. Unprescribed medications have serious consequences.

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