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Where and how should Ozempic be injected?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on June 15, 2023.

Official answer


Key Points

  • Ozempic (generic name: semaglutide) is a pen prefilled with an injectable medicine used to treat type 2 diabetes. It is given by self-injection once a week, on the same day each week, with or without meals.
  • You dial the pen to the dose that your doctor prescribes before you inject it. There are several steps you will need to learn for injection.
  • Ozempic is injected under the skin (subcutaneously) on your stomach (abdomen), thigh, or upper arm. Do not use the same site for each injection. If you choose to inject in the same area, always use a different spot in that area.
  • Do not inject Ozempic into a muscle (intramuscularly) or vein (intravenously).

When using Ozempic with insulin, give as separate injections and never mix the products. It is acceptable to inject Ozempic and insulin in the same body region, but the injections should not be next to each other.

Read the full Instructions for Use in the package insert on how to inject your Ozempic. Make sure that you know how to use the pen before you start your treatment. Your doctor, nurse or pharmacist will show you how.

How do I inject using the Ozempic pen?

The following is an abbreviated quick guide to using your pen. You should read the full, illustrated manufacturer’s Instructions for Use each time you get a new pen, in case of any changes to the instructions.

Always carry an extra pen and new needles with you, in case of loss or damage.

Have your health care provider show you how to use the pen the first time or until you feel comfortable using it. You can also watch a video on the manufacturer’s website to further review how to give an injection using the Ozempic pen. If you have additional questions, ask your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Basic steps

Prepare your dose

  1. Before each use, wash your hands with soap and water.
  2. Prepare your pen. Check your pen to be sure the liquid medicine is clear, colorless and free of particles. If not, don’t use it.
  3. Attach the needle. Pull off the outer and inner needle caps and throw them away. The Ozempic pen should be used with Novo Nordisk disposable needles that are supplied with your pen. Always use a new needle for each injection.
  4. Check the Ozempic flow before your first injection with each new pen (see directions "to check the flow" below).
  5. If you drop your pen or suspect a problem, attach a new needle and check the Ozempic flow before you inject.

Select and inject your dose

  1. Select your dose by dialing the pen to the dose that the doctor prescribed for you. If you select the wrong dose, you can turn the dose selector forward or backwards to the correct dose.
  2. Wipe your skin using an alcohol pad at the place where you will inject and let it dry. Insert the needle into your skin in the stomach (abdomen), thigh or upper arm.
  3. Press down on the center of the dose button to inject until “0 mg” lines up with the pointer.
  4. Keep the dose button pressed down, keep the needle under the skin, and slowly count to 6 to make sure the full dose is injected. Keep your thumb on the injection button until you remove the needle from your skin.
  5. Withdrawal the needle from your injection site. If blood appears at the injection site, press lightly with a gauze pad or cotton ball. Do not rub the area.

Discard your needle

  1. Carefully remove the needle from the pen and dispose of it in an FDA-approved sharps container. Do not throw away loose needles and pens in your household trash.
  2. Do not put the needle caps back on the needle to avoid needle sticks. Store your pen without the needle attached. DO NOT reuse or share needles.
  3. Put the pen cap on your pen after each use to protect Ozempic from light.
  4. Always keep your pen with you. Do not leave it in a car or other place where it can get too hot or too cold. Keep it out of reach of others, especially children and pets.

To check the flow

  1. The first time you use each new Ozempic pen be sure to dial to the flow check symbol. You only need to do this once with each new pen. Turn the dose selector until the flow check symbol lines up with pointer.
  2. Hold the pen with the needle pointing up. Keep the needle pointing up and press the dose button until "0 mg" lines up with the pointer. A drop of Ozempic will appear at the tip of the needle.
  3. If there is no drop, repeat steps 1 and 2, up to 6 times, until a drop of Ozempic appears at the needle tip. If there is still no drop, change the needle and repeat Step 1 and 2 one more time. Do not use the pen if a drop of Ozempic still does not appear. Contact Novo Nordisk at 1-888-693-6742.

Learn more about how to store your pen: Does Ozempic need to be refrigerated?

Dispose of (thrown away) your Ozempic after 56 days, even if it still has medicine left in it. Write the disposal date on your calendar to help you keep track.

If you have additional questions about your Ozempic pen, call your doctor, nurse or pharmacist. You may also contact a Certified Diabetes Educator at 1-866-696-4090 with Novo Nordisk, Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 6:00 pm ET.

Bottom Line

  • Ozempic (semaglutide) is a prefilled pen used for once-a-week self-injection to help control blood sugar in the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
  • Ozempic is injected under the skin (subcutaneously) on your stomach (abdomen), thigh, or upper arm.
  • There are several steps you must learn to be able to correctly inject Ozempic. Your doctor, nurse of pharmacist should teach you these steps before your first injection.
  • These abbreviated instructions do not take the place of having your health care provider teach you the proper technique for Ozempic injection and fully reading the manufacturer instructions found in your package.

This is not all the information you need to know about Ozempic (generic name: semaglutide) for safe and effective use or injection. Review the full Ozempic product information here, and discuss this information with your doctor or other health care provider.

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