Miracle weight loss jab that's even better than Wegovy approved in UK for type 2 diabetes patients

A drug hailed as the ‘King Kong’ of weight loss jabs is being given to diabetics on the NHS.

Around 180,000 people with type 2 diabetes are set to be given tirzepatide to help control their condition.

Taken as a once-weekly jab, it was given the green light for patients who cannot tolerate metformin – the first-line medicine for type 2 diabetes – once stocks become available.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) today recommended it as a diabetic medication, to be prescribed alongside diet and exercise.

It could be available as early as October, dependent on supply by the US pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly.

Tirzepatide, sold under the brand name Mounjaro, has been approved for use for diabetics in the NHS

Tirzepatide, sold under the brand name Mounjaro, has been approved for use for diabetics in the NHS

The above graphic shows how weight-loss drug tirzepatide works. It works to suppress hunger by mimicking hormones indicating that the body is full. It also shows the passage of food through the stomach by reducing the production of stomach acid and contractions of the muscle

The above graphic shows how weight-loss drug tirzepatide works. It works to suppress hunger by mimicking hormones indicating that the body is full. It also shows the passage of food through the stomach by reducing the production of stomach acid and contractions of the muscle

A decision on its use for weight loss is expected within months.

The once weekly jab is a class of drugs called GLP-1 agonists, which mimic a hormone that helps suppress the appetite, reducing food intake.

Trials also found it boosts the production of insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar, essential to control type 2 diabetes.

After just a year, a third of type 2 diabetics taking the drug lost more than 20 per cent of their body weight, significantly more than rivals.

It led US diabetes expert Dr Julio Rosenstock to declare it ‘King Kong’ compared to ‘the gorilla’ of semaglutide, the key ingredient in Wegoby and Ozempic.

Nice’s approval comes after it requested more evidence on the drug’s effectiveness in treating type 2 diabetes.

Its latest guidance said clinical trials showed using tirzepatide ‘resulted in significant reductions in blood sugar levels and body weight compared with semaglutide, insulin therapy or a placebo’.

The independent committee said almost two in three people with type 2 diabetes do not have it under control, putting them at risk of serious complications.

Helen Knight, director of medicines evaluation at Nice, said: ‘There are very few new medicines being developed to treat difficult-to-manage type 2 diabetes.

‘Our committee recognised the potential tirzepatide has to provide an effective and good value treatment option for all those living with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes.’

‘Poorly controlled type 2 diabetes, with its associated additional health risks, is a huge challenge for those living with the condition and the NHS.

‘This recommendation will offer fresh hope for many and provide value for money for the taxpayer.’

Nice is expected to publish its final draft guidance on October 11 with the drug made available within 90 days.

It comes the same week semaglutide, sold under the brand name Wegovy, was finally made available in the UK as a weight loss treatment.

About 50,000 people are expected to benefit on the NHS and more through private prescriptions amid a global shortage of the drug.

Trials suggest tirzepatide is marginally more powerful than its rival Wegovy when it comes to weight loss.  Produced by Danish firm Novo Nordisk Wegovy was recently approved for use on the NHS. Liraglutide and Orlistat are other weight loss drugs to treat obesity already in use in the health service

Trials suggest tirzepatide is marginally more powerful than its rival Wegovy when it comes to weight loss.  Produced by Danish firm Novo Nordisk Wegovy was recently approved for use on the NHS. Liraglutide and Orlistat are other weight loss drugs to treat obesity already in use in the health service 

Its popularity as a weight loss aid had seen stocks of the diabetic medication Ozempic, which contains the same key ingredient, run low and the NHS issue a notice to stop it being prescribed ‘off label’.

David Webb, chief pharmaceutical officer at NHS England, said the latest announcement is ‘great news at a time when there is disruption to the supply of key drugs used for treating people with diabetes’.

He said: ‘This will provide a much-needed addition to other available treatments, and can be prescribed alongside diet and exercise, to greatly improve the lives of those living with this difficult disease and give more people the chance of a healthier future.’

source: dailymail.co.uk