It is undeniable that the rise of Novo Nordisk’s Ozempic, and similar drugs, has been nothing short of a phenomenon as its use has expanded beyond the original intention of diabetes. The main ingredient, semaglutide, is a ‘GLP-1 receptor agonist,’ which can cause a side effect of weight loss for some patients.
Novo Nordisk is a 100-year old company; but it is Ozempic that has resulted in the company’s highest sales, profits and market cap. Forbes recently reported that because of Ozempic’s meteoric rise, Novo Nordisk is now valued at more ($430B) than its home country of Denmark’s entire GDP, while American calorie consumption is expected to decline by up to 3% by 2030 because of drugs like Ozempic.
However, a dark cloud is looming over all of the good news. According to research published in October in the Journal of the American Medical Association, for some patients, Ozempic also causes an increased risk of side effects like “pancreatitis, gastroparesis, and bowel obstruction.” The details:
- 9X higher risk of an inflamed pancreas (known as pancreatitis)
- 4X higher risk of bowel obstruction
- 3X higher risk of stomach paralysis (known as gastroparesis)
While side effects of any drug are to be expected, the researchers concluded that “Given the wide use of these drugs, these adverse events, although rare, must be considered by patients who are contemplating using the drugs for weight loss because the risk-benefit calculus for this group might differ from that of those who use them for diabetes.”
Around the same time, a lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court of Louisiana, alleged that Novo Nordisk “downplayed the severity of the gastrointestinal events caused by Ozempic… never, for example, warning of the risk of gastroparesis (“paralyzed stomach”).
On December 8, Reuters reported that the judge in Louisiana rejected Novo Nordisk’s attempt to dismiss the lawsuit:
U.S. District Judge James Cain Jr said plaintiff Jaclyn Bjorklund had provided enough support at this point in the case for her claim that Novo failed to warn her doctors about the risk of gastroparesis, a slowdown in the emptying of the stomach into the small intestine, associated with the drug.
At this time, Reuters is also reporting that over 20 similar lawsuits have been filed around the country by patients seeking compensation for injuries and illness possibly caused by Ozempic.
Our firm, based in New York State, is also talking to patients who may have illness caused by Ozempic. It is possible that Novo Nordisk failed to adequately warn patients about the possible side effects. To schedule a free consultation, either in person, over Zoom, or on the phone, give us a call at 845-600-0000. We’ll walk you through your options for receiving the maximum compensation for any damage that may have been caused by Ozempic.