Continuing Tirzepatide Leads to Maintenance of Weight Reduction

In HealthDay News
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Continued tirzepatide treatment maintains and augments initial weight reduction seen in first 36 weeks

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Dec. 11, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Withdrawing tirzepatide after 36 weeks is associated with regain of lost weight, while weight loss is maintained with continued treatment, according to a study published online Dec. 11 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Louis J. Aronne, M.D., from Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, and colleagues examined the effect of tirzepatide with diet and physical activity on the maintenance of weight reduction in a phase 3 trial conducted at 70 sites in four countries. A total of 783 participants enrolled in an open-label lead-in period received once-weekly tirzepatide for 36 weeks; at week 36, 670 participants were randomly assigned to continue receiving tirzepatide or switch to placebo for 52 weeks (335 participants in both groups).

The mean weight reduction was 20.9 percent for the 670 participants who completed the 36-week lead-in period. The researchers found that from week 36 to 88, the mean percent weight change was −5.5 versus 14.0 percent with tirzepatide and placebo, respectively (difference, −19.4 percent). Overall, 89.5 and 16.6 percent of those receiving tirzepatide and placebo, respectively, maintained at least 80 percent of the weight lost during the lead-in period. From week 0 to 88, the overall mean weight reduction was 25.3 and 9.9 percent for tirzepatide and placebo, respectively. Mostly mild-to-moderate gastrointestinal events, which occurred more commonly with tirzepatide versus placebo, were the most common adverse events reported.

“The SURMOUNT-4 trial results emphasize the need to continue pharmacotherapy to prevent weight regain and ensure the maintenance of weight reduction and its associated cardiometabolic benefits,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Eli Lilly, which manufactures tirzepatide and funded the study.

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