Woman says Ozempic helped her lose weight as she tried to get pregnant

SHOW: How weight loss drugs affect infertility

As the popularity of weight-loss drugs like Ozempic, Wegovy, and Mounjaro continues to grow, some women are taking a closer look at whether the drugs might impact their chances of getting pregnant.

Wynter Mitchell-Rohrbaugh told “Good Morning America” ‚Äč‚Äčthat she and her husband have already suffered four pregnancy losses in their quest to have a child. When the couple decided to pursue in vitro fertilization, or IVF, Mitchell-Rohrbaugh said they encountered another hurdle when a doctor told her she needed to lose 40 pounds before she could begin the process. .

“I kept thinking to myself, are you crazy? I’m not a little person,” she said. “I’m a plus size woman.”

To help her lose weight, Mitchell-Rohrbaugh said she turned to Ozempic, one of a class of drugs called GLP-1 RA that help people produce insulin and reduce the amount of sugar in the blood. The drugs work by slowing the movement of food through the stomach and reducing appetite, thus leading to weight loss.

Ozempic, made from a compound called semaglutide, is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration to treat type 2 diabetes, but some doctors prescribe it off-label for weight loss.

VIDEO: How weight loss drugs affect infertility

After using Ozempic for five months, Mitchell-Rohrbaugh said she lost 40 pounds.

She stopped taking medication and started fertility treatment. Mitchell-Rohrbaugh said she then had a successful round of IVF, which produced viable embryos.

“To answer that call, ‘Wynter, hi, I’ve got some good news,’ I never thought I’d hear that,” Mitchell-Rohrbaugh said.

What to know about weight loss drugs and fertility

Because semaglutide, the compound used in Ozempic and Wegovy, and tirzepatide, the compound used in Mounjaro, are relatively new to the market – approved by the FDA within the last five years to treat type 2 diabetes and obesity – there is still research to be done on their exact impact on women of childbearing age, experts say.

“We need to collect the information and verify that it is safe in this indication and will work for us,” California-based reproductive endocrinology and infertility specialist Dr. Richard Paulson told “GMA “.

The FDA states in its safety profiles of Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro that they should not be taken during pregnancy, noting that there is “insufficient data” available.

The FDA also explains that the drugs could cause weight loss and that “weight loss provides no benefit to a pregnant patient and may harm the fetus.”

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The agency recommends people stop treatment at least two months before planning a pregnancy.

Stopping medication should be done under the supervision of a medical provider, just like when you start medication, experts say.

A person who becomes pregnant unexpectedly while taking one of these drugs should contact their healthcare provider, who can help them stop the drug and ensure that they receive appropriate maternal care.

The FDA will monitor all cases where women are exposed to semaglutide (found in Wegovy and Ozempic) during pregnancy. The agency says pregnant women who are affected and health care providers should contact the drug’s manufacturer.

Before pregnancy, drugs like Ozempic, Mounjaro and Wegovy can be very effective in helping people with type 2 diabetes lower blood sugar and achieve a healthy weight, which can be essential for a healthy pregnancy, according to the Dr. Sarah Lassey, board-certified OB-GYN and co-director of the Diabetes in Pregnancy Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

MORE: Is Ozempic safe to take while pregnant or trying to conceive? Experts weigh

“We know that poorly controlled diabetes in pregnancy is associated with (adverse) maternal and fetal outcomes during pregnancy,” Lassey told “GMA” earlier this year, noting that those risks can include miscarriage, birth defect, stillbirth and preeclampsia. “Our way to prevent any of these adverse effects is to control blood glucose and hemoglobin A1c levels before conception as well as throughout pregnancy.”

Lassey said there isn’t enough long-term research at this point to know how drugs might impact fertility.

“We just don’t know,” she said, adding, “However, we do know that when people have better blood sugar control and things like that, they generally have lower miscarriage rates. and an improvement in their fertility.”

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