The Independent Pharmacy

How to Manage Common Side Effects of Mounjaro

Scott McDougall
Scott McDougallMPharmDirector & Registered Manager

Reviewed on 5 Apr 2024

1. Changes to your sense of taste

A very small amount of people have reported that some foods taste slightly different than they used to. We do not know why this happens and more studies are ongoing.

How to manage it:

Some people have found that trying new foods or food with strong flavours can help. Though if you are concerned about this please contact us directly.

2. Diarrhoea, acid reflux and heartburn

As the medication works on your gut side effects that relate to the stomach are to be expected. These are generally mild and should go away as your body gets used to the medication.

How to manage it:

Eat smaller meals and avoid anything spicy or strongly flavoured.

3. Burping and gas or flatulence

Semaglutide slows down your gut so the gas we normally produce may hang around for longer creating more issues as it comes out.

How to manage it:

Thankfully these side effects are mild and return to normal as your body adapts to the new medication. If these are especially problematic we have a range of treatments that we can recommend to help you.

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4. Nausea and vomiting

Unfortunately, this is the most common side effect of this medication. Sometimes you may vomit and other times you may just have a feeling of wanting to be sick. These effects do pass as you become accustomed to the medication. Equally the slow dose increase helps to reduce the chance of these symptoms from occurring.

How to manage it:

For most people, there are some simple changes and self-care that can help such as:

  • Taking regular sips of a cold drink
  • Drinking ginger or peppermint tea
  • Eating foods containing ginger - such as ginger biscuits
  • Eating smaller, more frequent meals

If the sickness or nausea is becoming unbearable please contact us as we have a range of treatments that we can provide for you to alleviate these unpleasant effects.

5. Dizziness or lightheadedness

A few patients have reported that they’ve experienced this early in their weight loss journey. It can often be made worse if you become dehydrated.

How to manage it:

Lie down until the dizziness passes, then slowly get up, moving carefully. Ensure that you avoid driving or operating machinery if you feel like this.

6. Fatigue

Feelings of tiredness or fatigue are usually a result of other effects of the medications such as reduced energy intake or vomiting and dehydration.

How to manage it:

Resting and taking time to adjust to the new changes in your lifestyle can help. It is always good advice to stay hydrated and not exert yourself too much.

7. Headaches

These are usually caused by dehydration and they often pass quickly.

If the headaches persist please contact our medical team for more advice.

How to manage it:

Rest and try not to over-exert yourself. Maintain a good fluid intake. You can take paracetamol as required.

8. Abdominal pain or constipation

There can be many reasons for feeling like this, especially as you go through changes in your diet, and while your body adjusts to Mounjaro. These are usually short-lived and resolve quickly.

However, if these are severe or do not go away they could be the signs of something more serious and you must contact your doctor or call 999 immediately.

How to manage it:

Small meals can help as can eating a bland diet. We can also recommend some simple over-the-counter treatments that can be taken to help.

How to reduce the chance of adverse reactions

Most of the side effects we’ve talked about are minor and do pass as your body gets used to taking Mounjaro, and the majority of people can take this medication without issue.

To reduce any side effects to a minimum, the titration plan takes you from a low dose to a maintenance dose very gradually.

If you need more information or just want to ask for support and advice our friendly and helpful medical team is available to speak to Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm - contact us by phone or email.

Serious side effects of Mounjaro

As with all medications, a small number of patients may experience very severe side effects. If these do happen you must contact a doctor for medical assistance immediately.

  • Pancreatitis - if you have pain in the centre of your stomach, vomiting and fever please seek medical attention immediately.
  • Retinopathy - if you develop blurred vision, patchy vision, eye pain or sudden vision loss please seek medical attention immediately.
  • Severe allergic reaction (such as swelling of your face, lips or throat, problems breathing or swallowing or a rapid heartbeat).
  • Severe pain in your stomach area (abdomen) that will not go away, with or without vomiting. You may feel the pain from your abdomen to your back.
  • Pain in your upper stomach (abdomen), fever, yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice), or clay-coloured stools.

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