Liraglutideas Adjunct Therapy in the Management of Obesity

Eugenio Cersosimo, Durval Ribas Filho

Abstract


The obesity epidemic has reached a new level with some impressive numbers recently published in
the United States of America. Even more alarming is the rapid increase in childhood obesity, which
has been universally documented over the past few decades. The reasons underlying the problem of
obesity can be simplified into three categories: i) routine consumption of bigger portion size meals; ii)
confusing messages from food industry to consumers; and iii) physical inactivity is the “new normal”.
Considering that the medical consequences of obesity are serious and directly affect morbidity and
mortality, it has become necessary to act concomitantly to prevent and treat the increase in body weight
and fat excess accumulation. The prevention of obesity is a formidable task that can only be accomplished
with a concerted effort put together by several governmental agencies, especially those interested
in agriculture, health and education, the food industry and health care providers, including physicians
and nutrition specialists. Treatment of obesity with behavioral management, nutritional manipulations
(“diets”) and, even bariatric surgery has had some success, but these strategies are accompanied by
limited benefits and only to a select group of individuals. More importantly, the overall impact of these
on the growing obesity pandemic is disappointing, at best. Some dietary recommendations with caloric
restriction and adjustments in nutrient intake combined to pharmacotherapy have expanded our ability
to manage obese patients.The recent approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) agency
of the Glucagon-Like-Peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor analog liraglutide, at the dose of 3.0 mg once daily,
has provided us with an additional tool to combat the disease and minimize its complications. In this
particular study, a significant reduction in the conversion ratesfrom pre-diabetes to diabetes was also
shown and represents an important findingof the trial. Despite the fact that nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
were frequently reported during the 1-year period of observation, tolerance was acceptable and
most subjects completed the study.These data clearly indicate that combination drug therapy with dietary
adjustments can be successful in promoting weight reduction and further support routine utilization
of adjuvant pharmacotherapy in the management of obesity.

Keywords


Obesity, GLP-1 RA, Liraglutide, Pre-Diabetes

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22565/ijn.v8i3.193

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