Weight Loss Medications

If you have tried conventional weight management and aren't a candidate for or choose not to have weight loss surgery, weight loss medications may be an option.

Patients interested in taking weight loss medications must have an initial consultation with a Gundersen registered dietitian and a medical assessment with our team physician. You will meet with a provider to discuss the prescription medications available, their side effects and potential complications.

In order to participate in this program, you must have:

  • An exam with your primary care provider within the last year
  • Complete a medical assessment prior to taking weight loss medications to ensure your safety during the program

Once the medical assessment is complete, you will enroll in the six-month weight loss medication program and begin working on lifestyle changes necessary for long-term success. You will meet with a registered dietitian monthly and the physician three times through the six-month time frame.

Not everyone is a candidate for weight-loss medications. There are certain health problems that the medications can make worse. Learn the safe use and side effects of weight loss medicines.


Some people do not achieve weight loss while taking medications and are considered "non-responders." If you are a non-responder, you will be taken off the weight loss medication and alternative options will be discussed.

  • If you have the following conditions you are likely not a candidate for weight-loss medications: heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or other mood disorders, have severe or uncontrolled depression, if you are pregnant or are trying to be pregnant. Women taking these medications need to use birth control to prevent pregnancy.
  • Common symptoms include: dry mouth, constipation or diarrhea, abdominal discomfort, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, insomnia, numbness or tingling, gas, sweating, headaches, dizziness, anxiety, irritability, weird dreams. Some weight-loss drugs can cause a false-positive drug test. If you are screened by an employer for any other reason, advise the person taking the sample.

The relationship you develop with your registered dietitian and physician is also part of the foundation for long-term success. You are encouraged to participate in behavioral modification classes or consult with specialists in Behavioral Health and Exercise Physiology as appropriate.

Love + Medicine

Every day, Gundersen Health System delivers great medicine plus a little something extra—we call it Love + Medicine.

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