Ozempic Side Effects
Generic name: semaglutide
Note: This document contains side effect information about semaglutide. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Ozempic.
For the Consumer
Applies to semaglutide: oral tablet
Other dosage forms:
Oral route (Tablet)
Warning: Risk of Thyroid C-Cell TumorsIn rodents, semaglutide causes thyroid C-cell tumors. It is unknown whether semaglutide causes thyroid C-cell tumors, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), in humans as the human relevance of semaglutide-induced rodent thyroid C-cell tumors has not been determined.Semaglutide is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC or in patients with Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2). Counsel patients regarding the potential risk of MTC and symptoms of thyroid tumors
Side effects requiring immediate medical attention
Along with its needed effects, semaglutide (the active ingredient contained in Ozempic) may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking semaglutide:
- blurred vision
- cold sweats
- cool, pale skin
- darkened urine
- difficulty swallowing
- fast heartbeat
- increased hunger
- large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
- loss of appetite
- pain in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
- skin rash
- slurred speech
- tightness in the chest
- trouble breathing
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- yellow eyes or skin
Side effects not requiring immediate medical attention
Some side effects of semaglutide may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.
Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Acid or sour stomach
- excess air or gas in stomach
- feeling pressure in the stomach
- passing gas
- stomach discomfort, swelling, tenderness, or upset
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to semaglutide: oral tablet, subcutaneous solution
GLP- 1 Receptor Agonist:
Postmarketing reports: Medullary thyroid cancer
Cases of Medullary thyroid cancer (MTC) have been reported in patients treated with liraglutide in the postmarketing period; the data in these reports is insufficient to establish or exclude a causal relationship between MTC and GLP-1 receptor agonist use in humans.
Very common (10% or more): Nausea (up to 44%), increased amylase (up to 13%), increased lipase (up to 22%), diarrhea (up to 30%), vomiting (up to 24%), constipation (up to 24%), abdominal pain (up to 20%),
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Appendicitis
In clinical trials for type 2 diabetes, acute pancreatitis was confirmed by adjudication in 7 (0.3 cases per 100 patient years) and 8 patients (0.27 per 100 patient years) in 2 separate trials (compared to 3 and 10 placebo treated patients, respectively). One case of chronic pancreatitis was confirmed. In clinical trials for weight loss, 4 cases of acute pancreatitis were confirmed by adjudication (vs 1 placebo case). In weight loss trials, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, and abdominal pain were reported more frequently than in clinical trials for type 2 diabetes.
Rare (less than 0.1%): Anaphylactic reaction
Frequency not reported: Angioedema
Postmarketing reports: Ananaphylaxis, rash, urticaria
In a 2-year trial among patients with type 2 diabetes and high cardiovascular risk, patients treated with this drug experienced a great incidence of diabetic retinopathy complications (3% vs 1.8%). The absolute risk was greater in patients with a history of diabetic retinopathy at baseline (8.2%[drug] vs 5.2%[placebo]) than those without (0.7%[drug] vs 0.4%[placebo]).
Common (1% to 10%): Diabetic retinopathy complications
Common (1% to 10%): Hypoglycemia, decreased appetite, weight loss
In the weight loss clinical trials, patients without type 2 diabetes experienced episodes of hypoglycemia.
Common (1% to 10%): Injection site reactions
Frequency not reported: Development of anti-semaglutide (the active ingredient contained in Ozempic) antibodies
As with other protein and peptide pharmaceuticals, patients receiving this drug have developed anti-semaglutide antibodies. The detection of antibody formation is highly dependent on the sensitivity and specificity of the assay, as well as other factor in handling of the sample. For these reasons, the incidence of antibodies cannot be directly compared with other products. Anti-drug antibodies to semaglutide have been reported in up to 1% of patients during clinical trials.
Common (1% to 10%): Cholelithiasis
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Cholecystitis
Frequency not reported: Acute gallbladder disease
Cholelithiasis has been reported in 1.5% and 0.4% of patients receiving 0.5 mg and 1 mg weekly, respectively.
Very common (10% or more): Fatigue (up to 11%)
Fatigue was reported in greater than 0.4% of patients.
Very common (10% or more): Headache (up to 14%)
Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Dysgeusia
Postmarketing reports: Acute kidney injury, worsening of chronic renal failure
A mean increase in heart rate of 2 to 3 beats per minute (bpm) was reported in clinical trials for type 2 diabetes. In weight loss clinical trials, a mean increase in resting heart rate of 1 to 4 bpm was observed. Maximal changes from baseline at any visit of 10 to 19 bpm (41% vs 34% placebo) and 20 bpm (26% vs 16% placebo) were recorded. In weight loss clinical trials, Hypotension and orthostatic hypotension were more frequently seen in patients on concomitant antihypertensive therapy. Some reactions were related to gastrointestinal reactions and associated volume loss.
Common (1% to 10%): Hypotension, orthostatic hypotension
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Syncope
Frequency not reported: Increased heart rate
Common (1% to 10%): Hair loss
Frequently asked questions
- How long does it take for Ozempic to work?
- How many doses are in an Ozempic pen?
- What is the difference between Ozempic and Wegovy?
- Does Ozempic need to be refrigerated?
- What is Ozempic used for and how does it work?
- What type of drug is Ozempic (semaglutide)?
- Where and how should Ozempic be injected?
- Does Rybelsus help with weight loss?
- How long does it take for Rybelsus to start working?
- What is Rybelsus used for and how does it work?
More about Ozempic (semaglutide)
- Drug interactions
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Reviews (641)
- Patient tips
- Drug images
- Pricing & coupons
- Drug class: incretin mimetics
- FDA approval history
Related treatment guides
1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0
2. "Product Information. Ozempic (1 mg dose) (semaglutide)." Novo Nordisk Pharmaceuticals Inc, Princeton, NJ.
3. "Product Information. Rybelsus (semaglutide)." Novo Nordisk Pharmaceuticals Inc (2021):
4. "Product Information. Wegovy (0.25 mg dose) (semaglutide)." Novo Nordisk Pharmaceuticals Inc, Princeton, NJ.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.