Diabetic and Weight Loss Medication

Diabetic and Weight Loss Medication

What you need to know about GLP 1 agonists before surgery

Whether you’re taking GLP 1 agonists as weight loss medication or to manage type 2 diabetes, it’s important to share this information with your doctor—especially before a scheduled procedure.

Many medications for diabetes and weight loss contain semaglutide or similar ingredients listed below. People take these prescription medications as a weekly injection or daily oral dose by mouth.

These medications suppress appetite and slow down gastric emptying—this means undigested food can stay in the stomach for longer periods.

When this happens, it can increase the chances food is aspirated into the lungs or airway during a medical procedure. This includes during a colonoscopy or other procedures that require anesthesia or sedation.

Here is a list of oral and injectable GLP 1 brand name medications you may know about or your doctor has prescribed to you. Stop the oral or injectable medication one week prior to a procedure.

GLP 1 Agonist Injections – Medication List

  • Ozempic (semaglutide)
  • Wegovy (semaglutide)
  • Mounjaro and Zepbound (tirzepatide)
  • Trulicity (dulaglutide)
  • Victoza, Saxenda (liraglutide)
  • Bydureon BCise (exenatide extended-release)
  • Byetta (exenatide)

GLP 1 Agonist Oral – Medication List

  • Rybelsus (semaglutide)

Anorectic-Oral Medication

Anorectic medications fall into a different class of medication from GLP-1 agonists. What they have in common—both medication types have appetite suppression effects. Stop taking these medications five days before a procedure that requires anesthesia or sedation. Here’s the list of brand names.

  • Adipex-P, Lomaira, Suprenza (phentermine hydrochloride)
  • Qsymia (phentermine hydrochloride/topiramate)

Wondering how to handle semaglutide before surgery?

If you have a scheduled medical procedure, you might be curious about when to stop taking your weight loss or diabetes medications with semaglutide. Planning ahead is the best way to prepare.

At Gastroenterology of the Rockies, we take our patients’ safety seriously. This is why our GI physicians and advanced practice providers follow guidelines set by the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA).

According to ASA, it is recommended that patients stop taking GLP 1 weekly injections and oral pills one week prior to any surgery that requires sedation.

Ask Questions Before Stopping a Semaglutide Medicines

  • Ask your endocrinologist or diabetes doctor how to manage and watch blood sugar levels when you need to periodically stop taking semaglutide or other GLP 1 medications.
  • Ask how to handle a spike in blood sugar levels –should that occur. This will help you plan ahead or adjust food intake while managing your diabetes.
  • Talk to your PCP or endocrinologist to request an appointment with a diabetes educator. This person can help you with meal planning so it fits within your treatment plan while supporting your digestive health.

*Medical Disclaimer—this information is not meant to be used as medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about any medications you are currently prescribed—including supplements—and follow your doctor’s instructions.