Ozempic is all the rage, with celebrities and influencers touting its magical weight loss properties. So, it’s no wonder that normal, everyday women are desperate to get their hands on the drug, which is meant to treat Type 2 diabetes, in order to slim down themselves. Australian mom Trish Webster thought Ozempic could help her drop some pounds before her daughter’s wedding, but instead, it ended up costing her her life.
Trish Webster wanted to fit into a specific dress for her daughter’s wedding.
She wasn’t finding much luck via diet and exercise, so when she saw an ad for Ozempic on TV in 2022, she reached out to her doctor to get a prescription.
She immediately began experiencing some of the more unpleasant side effects that come with the drug, including extreme diarrhea. However, the 56-year-old’s husband, Ray, told “60 Minutes Australia” that she just wouldn’t stop.
“My daughter was getting married, and she just kept mentioning that dress that she wanted to wear,” Ray recalled. “She went to the dressmaker to get the measurements. It was one big nightmare from there.”
A few months later, Trish switched to Saxenda.
Similar to semaglutide (the active ingredient in Ozempic) and tirzepatide, Saxenda’s active ingredient, liraglutide, stops the appetite in its tracks. Trish thought she may face fewer side effects and continue to lose weight.
Within five months of using Ozempic and Saxenda, Trish Webster had lost 35 pounds. However, throughout that time, she continued to experience diarrhea, vomiting, and extreme nausea.
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On January 16, 2023, Trish Webster died.
Ray was the one who found her and he was in complete shock. “She had a little bit of brown stuff coming out of her mouth and I realized she wasn’t breathing and started doing CPR,” he told “60 Minutes Australia.”
“It was just pouring out and I turned her onto the side because she couldn’t breathe.”
Sadly, Trish died that same night, with her official death certificate listing “acute gastrointestinal illness” as the cause.
And while the injectible drugs she was taking aren’t listed, Ray believes they were directly responsible for his wife’s death.
“I couldn’t save her; that’s the hard part,” he said. “If I knew that could happen, she wouldn’t have been taking it.”
The dangers of Ozempic and similar drugs are only just being discovered.
In June 2023, a study found that Ozempic could cause severe gastroparesis, in which the stomach becomes paralyzed and can no longer empty itself correctly.
Three months later, in September 2023, the FDA issued a statement warning that Ozempic can cause ileus, a life-threatening condition in which sections or the entirety of the bowel becomes blocked, potentially leading to tissue necrosis, sepsis, and even death.
Of course, Danish firm Novo Nordisk, the company behind Ozempic, insist it’s perfectly safe.
“Patient safety is a top priority for Novo Nordisk. We take all reports about adverse events from use of our medicines very seriously. However, we do not comment on individual patient cases,” the company said in a statement.
“Ozempic (semaglutide) is a prescription medicine that should be taken under the care of a licensed healthcare provider. Ozempic is FDA-approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, to improve blood sugar, along with diet and exercise, and reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events such as heart attack, stroke, or death in adults with type 2 diabetes and known heart disease. Ozempic is not indicated for chronic weight management.”