How Much Does Rybelsus Cost: Everything You Need to Know
Category: Medical FAQ
Posted on May 13, 2022
Scott is passionate about health and wellness, and enjoys writing on various topic surrounding these fields. Scott lives in Seattle and spends his free time restoring old furniture and playing pickleball with his friends.
Did you know that insulin vials in the United States cost between $275 to $289? Compared to twenty years ago, these prices are anywhere from 400 to 680% higher!
Insulin is one medication that many people with type I and type II diabetes take. Usually, patients with type II diabetes may also need other medications daily or monthly. One of these newer prescription medications is Rybelsus.
How much does Rybelsus cost? If you have already tried refilling a prescription, you know just how high Rybelsus prices are in America.
What if we told you that there are more affordable options out there for you? At PricePro Pharmacy, we've put together a complete guide on what Rybelsus is, how much it costs, and how you can save money today on high-quality prescription medications.
Keep reading for more information!
What Is Rybelsus?
Rybelsus is a prescription medication with the active ingredient semaglutide. While Rybelsus is the brand-name prescription, semaglutide is the generic version (currently unavailable in the United States). Both these medications belong to a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists.
Rybelsus' primary prescription use is treating type II diabetes. It works by managing blood sugars, although the first line of treatment should be diet and exercise first.
How Do GLP-1 Receptor Agonists Work?
GLP-1 receptor agonists manage blood sugars in patients with type II diabetes. It enhances the natural reproduction of GLP-1 (a gut hormone) that can help with:
- Boosting meal-dependent insulin secretion
- Decreasing glucagon
- Decreasing gastric emptying
- Increasing stomach fullness
There is a small role that GLP-1 receptor agonists work in weight loss. Some patients may lose weight since it affects the brain's awareness of hunger and fullness. Although, this should never be the intended use of Rybelsus.
These drugs also play a stronger role in meal-dependent glucose levels versus fasting levels. Rybelsus uses include managing spikes in blood sugars after eating and has a less strong effect on stabilizing sugars afterward.
This mechanism allows them to be combined with other type II diabetes medications since they don't pose a high risk for hypoglycemic events. What are some other benefits?
These medications can also help your cardiac and kidney health. In some studies, researchers looked at GLP-1 receptor agonists and found fewer cardiovascular and kidney disease risk factors.
Rybelsus is a long-acting GLP-1 receptor agonist. It requires a daily dosage and has shown more positive effects in reducing A1C levels. Long-acting medications can also have greater outcomes on fasting blood glucose levels.
Are GLP-1 Receptor Agonists Better Than Other Medications?
GLP-1 receptor agonists are not necessarily better than other medications, but it offers an excellent alternative. Most patients with type II diabetes may try diet, exercise, or lifestyle changes first. If that doesn't work, a physician may prescribe metformin.
Metformin is a biguanide and is often used independently or in combination medications. It is one of the most popular medications to treat type II diabetes. Metformin is usually priced lower than other diabetes medications.
At PricePro Pharmacy, you can find metformin prices under 20 cents per unit. However, metformin has many side effects, and it can interfere with other medications.
It poses a high risk with insulin, cholesterol medications, and thyroid drugs. Some people may not respond well to the drug or want to try something with fewer side effects. People often switch to newer drugs such as Rybelsus to avoid hypoglycemic events or who have underlying medical issues.
How Long Does Rybelsus Take to Work?
Rybelsus has three dosage options: 3 mg, 7 mg, and 14 mg. It is an oral tablet, making it an ideal option for patients who don't want an injection.
Rybelsus is a medication that you should take on an empty stomach. Medical experts recommend that you take it first thing in the morning. You should wait at least thirty minutes before eating food.
Use only a small amount of water (approximately four ounces) when taking this medication. Most physicians will start you out on the lowest dosage and wait thirty days before increasing. Since it is a long-acting blood sugar medication, it is not uncommon that it may take four to five weeks before you start noticing a difference.
In clinical trials, approximately 69% to 77% of patients who took Rybelsus showed HbA1C levels lower than seven percent. Fasting blood glucose levels also decreased in groups that took 7 mg and 14 mg dosages.
How Long Do You Take Rybelsus For?
How long you take Rybelsus for is a decision between you and your medical provider. You will likely need Rybelsus long-term.
Type II diabetes is a chronic condition and is difficult to reverse. In most cases, you can safely manage your symptoms and improve your prognosis through medications and lifestyle changes.
Rybelsus Side Effects
It is normal that you may experience some mild side effects when you first start this medication. Here are some common Rybelsus side effects:
- Reduced appetite
Serious side effects are uncommon, but they can occur in rare instances. You may also have an allergic reaction to one of Rybelsus' ingredients. Allergic reactions typically entail rash, itchiness, or difficulty breathing.
If you experience other reactions such as fever or confusion, you should seek immediate medical attention.
Rybelsus vs. Ozempic
Some patients wonder how Rybelsus stacks up against competitors, such as Ozempic. Ozempic is another prescription medication that contains the same active ingredient: semaglutide. They are both FDA-approved to treat type II diabetes and blood glucose levels.
The key difference is that Ozempic comes in a subcutaneous injection form. Currently, there are no studies directly comparing the two. Yet, in separate clinical trials, both medications effectively improved blood sugar levels in patients with type II diabetes.
Ozempic shares many similar side effects as Rybelsus. However, it has higher risks for injection site pain, swelling, or redness. Ozempic can also cost close to $1,000, and if you don't like needles, you may struggle to take this medication.
Are There Other Oral GLP-1 Agonist Receptors?
Unfortunately, the only approved oral GLP-1 agonist receptor is Rybelsus. In most instances, when you take medication orally, it becomes digested and broken down in the stomach.
GLP-1 agonist receptors need full absorption to affect blood sugar levels. This concept is primarily why injections are the only other GLP-1 agonist receptor options.
In these clinical trials, the stomach did not destroy semaglutide, and it showed good systemic circulation and absorption.
How Much Does Rybelsus Cost?
In the United States, Rybelsus can easily cost as much as Ozempic for a 30-day tablet supply. How does this compare to an online pharmacy such as PricePro Pharmacy?
We offer much more affordable Rybelsus prices at $325 for a 7 mg, 30-day tablet supply.
Why Is Rybelsus So Expensive?
Have you wondered why the cost of Rybelsus is so high? Rybelsus cost in America is primarily from patents and lack of government regulation. Currently, Rybelsus is a newer medication and the first in its class of oral GLP-1 receptor agonists.
Since there is no market competition, prices can soar. Lack of government regulation and price caps on private pharmaceutical companies also play a key role. Without restrictions, these companies can set their prices as they see fit.
How drastic are the differences? Experts compared 20 brand-name medications and found prices were two to four times higher in the United States. The comparison was between drug prices in Canada, Australia, and France.
Why do Canadian pharmacies have cheaper Rybelsus prices? There are more government restrictions on price caps, which make prescription medications more affordable.
Best Diabetes Medications
GLP-1 agonist receptors are some of the best medications on the market for type II diabetes. Researchers found that they were superior to other medications that aim to reduce high blood sugars. Studies find that GLP-1 agonist receptors have better efficacy and cardiovascular protection.
The downside? These drugs are costly and may cause gastrointestinal side effects. If you have not responded to traditional type II diabetes medications, GLP-1 agonist receptors could be your next best choice.
Additionally, the researchers also found that patients responded better to long-acting medications, such as Rybelsus. There was better adherence and patient satisfaction.
Find Affordable Medications Today
Have you wondered, "how much does Rybelsus cost?" In America, high drug prices mean you could spend close to a thousand monthly on Rybelsus prescriptions.
Unfortunately, many residents can't afford these much-needed medications. Often, this leads to missed prescription refills and ongoing health issues.
PricePro Pharmacy offers a better and more cost-friendly alternative. On our site, you can find a list of common type II diabetes medications, including Rybelsus. Check out our list of medications today and find one that meets your prescription refill!