Patient Care magazine strives to bring primary care clinicians the latest medical research and news. In our endeavor to keep you informed, we are highlighting a recent groundbreaking study on the potential benefits of semaglutide for individuals with cardiovascular disease (CVD) and overweight or obesity.
The SELECT trial, presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions meeting, aimed to determine whether adding semaglutide to standard care could reduce the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events in adults with pre-existing CVD and without diabetes.
During the study, 17,604 patients, aged 45 or older, with a body mass index of 27 or greater, were randomly assigned to receive either a once-weekly subcutaneous injection of semaglutide 2.4 mg or a placebo. The primary endpoint was a composite of death from cardiovascular causes, nonfatal myocardial infarction, or nonfatal stroke.
The findings were remarkable. Patients receiving semaglutide 2.4 mg experienced a 20% risk reduction in the composite endpoint compared to those on placebo. This suggests that semaglutide may have a significant role in mitigating cardiovascular risks in individuals with CVD and overweight or obesity.
However, it is important to note that there were varying side effects observed during the trial. While serious side effects were less frequent among those treated with semaglutide, discontinuation of treatment due to side effects occurred more frequently in the semaglutide group, primarily due to gastrointestinal disorders such as nausea and diarrhea. These side effects are known limitations of semaglutide treatment.
The study authors emphasize that the benefits of semaglutide may go beyond weight loss alone. The complex nature of the drug and its receptor interactions lead them to believe that the mechanisms driving its cardiovascular benefits are multifaceted and require further investigation.
As with any study, it is imperative to consider these findings in the context of individual patient needs and consult with a healthcare professional before making any changes to treatment plans.
For more details on this groundbreaking study, click here.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is semaglutide?
Semaglutide is a medication commonly used to treat type 2 diabetes. It belongs to a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists. Semaglutide works by stimulating insulin production and reducing appetite.
What were the primary findings of the SELECT trial?
The SELECT trial demonstrated that patients with cardiovascular disease and overweight or obesity who received semaglutide 2.4 mg experienced a 20% reduction in the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events, such as death from cardiovascular causes, nonfatal myocardial infarction, or nonfatal stroke, compared to those on placebo.
What were the side effects observed with semaglutide treatment?
Although semaglutide showed cardiovascular benefits, some patients experienced side effects such as nausea and diarrhea. While serious side effects were lower among individuals treated with semaglutide, discontinuation of treatment due to side effects occurred more frequently in the semaglutide group.
What further research is needed?
The study authors believe that additional research is necessary to fully understand the complex mechanisms behind semaglutide’s cardiovascular benefits. They note that weight loss alone may not explain the drug’s efficacy, highlighting the need for further investigation into the drug’s receptor interactions and potential physiological effects beyond weight reduction.
Sources: *Patient Care*, [URL]