Easy-to-read medicine information about liraglutide – what it is, how to take it safely and possible side effects. Liraglutide is commonly known as Saxenda.
|Type of medicine||Also called|
What is Saxenda?
Saxenda is a weight-loss treatment that is used together with a healthy, balanced diet and regular exercise as part of an overall weight-loss plan. It is recommended for adults with excess weight (a BMI of 27 or more) who also have weight-related medical problems or those with a BMI of 30 or more (obese). Saxenda suppresses your appetite by increasing feelings of fullness and reducing feelings of hunger, which can lead to eating fewer calories and losing weight.
In New Zealand Saxenda comes as an injection that it is given under your skin, and is available on prescription only.
Dose of Saxenda
- The usual starting dose is 0.6 mg once a day.
- Your doctor will tell you how long to keep taking this dose. It will be for at least 1 week.
- Your dose may then be increased by 0.6 mg each week until you reach the recommended dose of 3 mg once a day.
- Once you reach the recommended dose of 3 mg in week 5 of treatment, keep using this dose until your treatment period ends. Do not increase your dose further.
|Week||Dose to inject|
|Week 1||0.6 mg once a day|
|Week 2||1.2 mg once a day|
|Week 3||1.8 mg once a day|
|Week 4||2.4 mg once a day|
|Week 5 onwards||3 mg once a day|
On Saxenda treatment weight loss normally starts within 2 weeks and continues for 9–12 months.
How to use Saxenda
Your healthcare provider will show you how to use Saxenda. The following is a guide.
Time of day
Saxenda injection is used once a day. You can use Saxenda at any time of day, with or without food and drinks. It is best to use Saxenda at about the same time each day, at a time that is most convenient for you.
Saxenda is a pre-filled, dial-a-dose pen. This means that the pen contains an amount of medicine already loaded (18 mg of liraglutide). Depending on the dose you dial, it can deliver amounts of 0.6 mg, 1.2 mg, 1.8 mg, 2.4 mg and 3 mg.
Saxenda pre-filled pens are designed to be used with NovoFine® needles of up to 8 mm long Needles are not included with the pen. Ask your doctor or nurse which needle width (gauge) and length is best for you. Use a new needle for each injection and dispose of it after use.
Saxenda is given as an injection under your skin (subcutaneous injection) as shown to you by your doctor or nurse. Saxenda may be injected into the front of your waist (abdomen), the front of your thigh or your upper arm. Do not inject Saxenda into a vein or muscle.
If you miss a dose of Saxenda and the next dose is less than 12 hours away, skip the missed dose and carry on as normal. If there are more than 12 hours until the next dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not take 2 doses at the same time.
Precautions before taking Saxenda
- Do you have problems with your stomach or digestive system?
- Do you have diabetes?
- Are you over 75 years old?
- Do you have an overactive thyroid?
- Do you have kidney or liver problems?
- Are you pregnant or breastfeeding?
If so, it’s important to tell your doctor or pharmacist before you start Saxenda. Sometimes a medicine isn’t suitable for a person with certain conditions, or it can only be used with extra care.
Like all medicines, Saxenda can cause side effects, although not everyone gets them.
|Side effects||What should I do?|