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Semaglutide is the active ingredient in Rybelsus and Ozempic, two drugs that are mostly used to treat Type 2 diabetes. Despite having the same active ingredient, their administration, efficacy, side effects, and safety precautions differ and are comparable in noticeable ways.

Administration and Dosage

To ensure effectiveness, Rybelsus is an oral tablet that is taken once daily, usually in the morning on an empty stomach, along with precise instructions for the amount of food and drink to be consumed. It is available at doses ranging from 3 mg to 14 mg, with increases possible every 30 days.

Conversely, Ozempic is a once-weekly subcutaneous injection that can be used in doses ranging from 0.25 mg to 2 mg and is not associated with food restrictions. Patients may choose a weekly injection over daily pills due to convenience, depending on how the medications are administered.


Patients with Type 2 diabetes can effectively lower their A1C levels with both medicines. Both medications have demonstrated comparable drops in A1C and weight loss in clinical trials; Rybelsus showed a 1.4% drop in A1C while Ozempic showed a 1.6% decline.

As evidenced by studies where the maximal dose of Ozempic resulted in an A1C drop of 2.2 percentage points and weight loss of 15 pounds, greater doses of the medication are available and may yield more notable effects in terms of weight loss and A1C reduction.

Rybelsus vs Ozempic: The Side Effects

The side effects of Rybelsus vs Ozempic can be categorized as follows:

Gastrointestinal Issues:

  • One frequent adverse effect that might go away with time is nausea
  • Abdominal pain: Discomfort in the stomach area
  • Diarrhea: Frequent, loose, watery stools
  • Vomiting: The strong urge to throw up, which if it persists, can cause dehydration.
  • Constipation: Infrequent bowel movements due to difficulty passing feces.

Severity and Duration

Usually minor and transient, these adverse effects could become more apparent at higher dosages.

FDA Box Warnings

Risk of Cancer and Thyroid Tumors

There are warnings on both drugs regarding the possibility of thyroid cancer and tumors.


These drugs should not be taken by anyone who has a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer or Type 2 multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome.

It is important to keep an eye on these side effects and talk to a doctor about them if they get worse over time or continue.

Rybelsus vs Ozempic: Which One Should You Use?

When deciding between Rybelsus vs Ozempic, one must take lifestyle, personal preferences, and particular health requirements into account. It’s critical to have a comprehensive conversation with a healthcare professional to assess the advantages and possible drawbacks of each medicine and determine which one best suits your needs and circumstances.

For more detailed information on Rybelsus and Ozempic, feel free to give us a call at +65 6235 5300 to schedule an appointment and talk with one of our trusted weight loss experts.

Written by: Dr Michael MacDonald MB ChB, BSc (Hons), MRCP (UK), MD (Research), FESC (Europe). Dr MacDonald was trained in the UK and is a senior Consultant Cardiologist.



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