New research shows Ozempic may help curb alcohol addiction

Dr. Alok Patel, ABC News medical contributor and physician at Stanford Children's Health, discusses how Ozempic may also help prevent alcohol overuse and abuse.
5:35 | 12/04/23

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Transcript for New research shows Ozempic may help curb alcohol addiction
BE AWKWARD OR UNCOMFORTABLE, BUT NEEDS TO HAPPEN REGULARLY. BUT NEEDS TO HAPPEN REGULARLY. MEANWHILE, NEW RESEARCH MEANWHILE, NEW RESEARCH ON PERCENT PICK AND SEMAGLUTIDE ON PERCENT PICK AND SEMAGLUTIDE IS RAISING HOPE FOR THOSE IS RAISING HOPE FOR THOSE WHO DRINK EXCESSIVELY. WHO DRINK EXCESSIVELY. IT FINDS A WEIGHT LOSS DRUG MAY IT FINDS A WEIGHT LOSS DRUG MAY ALSO HELP PREVENT ALCOHOL ALSO HELP PREVENT ALCOHOL OVERUSE AND ABUSE. OVERUSE AND ABUSE. >> THIS IS RESEARCHERS WHETHER >> THIS IS RESEARCHERS WHETHER IT HAS THE POTENTIAL TO TREAT IT HAS THE POTENTIAL TO TREAT OTHER ADDICTIVE BEHAVIORS. OTHER ADDICTIVE BEHAVIORS. HAS MORE. HAS MORE. >> I HAVE NO DESIRE TO DRINK >> I HAVE NO DESIRE TO DRINK WINE ANYMORE. WINE ANYMORE. AND IT'S IT. AND IT'S IT. THAT'S CRAZY TO ME BECAUSE THAT'S CRAZY TO ME BECAUSE I COULDN'T STOP. I COULDN'T STOP. >> BEFORE THE WILDLY POPULAR >> BEFORE THE WILDLY POPULAR DRUG FOR WEIGHT LOSS, DRUG FOR WEIGHT LOSS, SEMAGLUTIDE IS NOW SHOWING VERY SEMAGLUTIDE IS NOW SHOWING VERY EARLY SIGNS OF POTENTIALLY EARLY SIGNS OF POTENTIALLY CURBING ALCOHOL USE FOR THOSE CURBING ALCOHOL USE FOR THOSE WHO DRINK EXCESSIVELY. WHO DRINK EXCESSIVELY. A NEW CASE STUDY COMPOSED A NEW CASE STUDY COMPOSED OF SIX PEOPLE SCREENING OF SIX PEOPLE SCREENING POSITIVE FOR ALCOHOL POSITIVE FOR ALCOHOL USE DISORDER OR UDY, FOUND USE DISORDER OR UDY, FOUND THAT THEY ALL SAW A CLINICALLY THAT THEY ALL SAW A CLINICALLY SIGNIFICANT DECREASE SIGNIFICANT DECREASE IN SYMPTOMS WHILE THEY WERE IN SYMPTOMS WHILE THEY WERE USING SEMAGLUTIDE FOR LOSS. USING SEMAGLUTIDE FOR LOSS. >> CHRISTY MARTIN, WHO WAS NOT >> CHRISTY MARTIN, WHO WAS NOT PART OF THE STUDY, SAYS WHILE PART OF THE STUDY, SAYS WHILE SHE USED TO DRINK WINE EVERY SHE USED TO DRINK WINE EVERY NIGHT. NIGHT. HER URGE TO DRINK HAS HER URGE TO DRINK HAS DISAPPEARED. DISAPPEARED. >> DRINKING FOR ME WAS BECOMING >> DRINKING FOR ME WAS BECOMING A BIT OF AN ISSUE AND THE FACT A BIT OF AN ISSUE AND THE FACT THAT I JUST HAVE NO DESIRE FOR THAT I JUST HAVE NO DESIRE FOR IT IS SOMETHING I DIDN'T EXPECT IT IS SOMETHING I DIDN'T EXPECT AND IS JUST AN AMAZING SIDE AND IS JUST AN AMAZING SIDE BENEFIT. BENEFIT. >> I CAN'T EVEN TELL YOU. >> I CAN'T EVEN TELL YOU. THIS SMALL CASE STUDY NOW THIS SMALL CASE STUDY NOW THE STAGE FOR LARGER CLINICAL THE STAGE FOR LARGER CLINICAL TRIALS LOOKING AT SEMAGLUTIDE TRIALS LOOKING AT SEMAGLUTIDE A TREATMENT FOR ED A TREATMENT FOR ED AS RESEARCHERS EXPLORE WHETHER AS RESEARCHERS EXPLORE WHETHER DRUG HAS THE POTENTIAL TO TREAT DRUG HAS THE POTENTIAL TO TREAT OTHER EXCESSIVE USE CONDITION. OTHER EXCESSIVE USE CONDITION. >> AND AGAIN, THIS INITIAL >> AND AGAIN, THIS INITIAL STUDY ONLY INCLUDED STUDY ONLY INCLUDED SIX PATIENTS. SIX PATIENTS. BUT AS YOU HEARD, MORE THOROUGH BUT AS YOU HEARD, MORE THOROUGH STUDIES ARE ALREADY UNDERWAY. STUDIES ARE ALREADY UNDERWAY. IT COULD BE YEARS BEFORE WE IT COULD BE YEARS BEFORE WE KNOW THE TRUE RESULTS, KNOW THE TRUE RESULTS, BUT CERTAINLY REASON TO HOPE, BUT CERTAINLY REASON TO HOPE, DIANE. DIANE. ALL RIGHT. ALL RIGHT. WE'LL TAKE IT, ERIELLE RESHEF. WE'LL TAKE IT, ERIELLE RESHEF. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. AND ABC NEWS MEDICAL AND ABC NEWS MEDICAL CONTRIBUTOR, PHYSICIAN CONTRIBUTOR, PHYSICIAN AT STANFORD CHILDREN'S HEALTH AT STANFORD CHILDREN'S HEALTH DR. ALOK PATEL JOINS ME NOW FOR DR. ALOK PATEL JOINS ME NOW FOR MORE ON THIS. MORE ON THIS. DR. JO, BREAK THIS DOWN. DR. JO, BREAK THIS DOWN. WHAT DOES THIS RESEARCH REALLY WHAT DOES THIS RESEARCH REALLY TELL US ABOUT WHAT OZEMPIC TELL US ABOUT WHAT OZEMPIC AND WHAT OTHER SIMILAR COULD AND WHAT OTHER SIMILAR COULD POSSIBLY DO FOR CURBING POSSIBLY DO FOR CURBING DRUG AND ALCOHOL USE AND WHAT DRUG AND ALCOHOL USE AND WHAT THIS RESEARCH IS REALLY TO IS THIS RESEARCH IS REALLY TO IS THIS GROWING BODY OF ANECDOTAL THIS GROWING BODY OF ANECDOTAL EVIDENCE AND CASE EVIDENCE AND CASE SERIES REPORTS. SERIES REPORTS. THIS IS PATIENTS BASICALLY THIS IS PATIENTS BASICALLY FILLING OUT QUESTIONNAIRES FILLING OUT QUESTIONNAIRES ARE REPORTING THAT IT'S ARE REPORTING THAT IT'S POSSIBLE THAT SEMAGLUTIDE POSSIBLE THAT SEMAGLUTIDE AND IS GLP ONE AGONIST. AND IS GLP ONE AGONIST. THIS WHOLE CLASS OF MEDICATIONS THIS WHOLE CLASS OF MEDICATIONS THAT WE'VE BEEN TALKING THAT WE'VE BEEN TALKING ABOUT MAY DECREASE THE RISK ABOUT MAY DECREASE THE RISK OF NOT ONLY ALCOHOL OF NOT ONLY ALCOHOL USE DISORDER BUT ALSO IN OTHER USE DISORDER BUT ALSO IN OTHER ADDICTIVE BEHAVIORS AS WELL ADDICTIVE BEHAVIORS AS WELL WITH SOME SPECIALISTS SAYING WITH SOME SPECIALISTS SAYING THAT THEIR PATIENTS HAVE THAT THEIR PATIENTS HAVE REPORTED DECREASED INCIDENCES REPORTED DECREASED INCIDENCES OF SHOPPING AND GAMBLING OF SHOPPING AND GAMBLING ADDICTION, EVEN SMOKING, ADDICTION, EVEN SMOKING, IN SOME CASES NICOTINE OR IN SOME CASES NICOTINE OR OPIATE USE. OPIATE USE. SO THIS IS PROMISING BUT WE SO THIS IS PROMISING BUT WE DEFINITELY NEED MORE RESEARCH. DEFINITELY NEED MORE RESEARCH. BUT AGAIN, WE WANT TO SEE BUT AGAIN, WE WANT TO SEE ALL THESE DATA COME OUT THERE ALL THESE DATA COME OUT THERE SO WE CAN ACTUALLY HAVE THOSE SO WE CAN ACTUALLY HAVE THOSE EDUCATIONAL ACADEMIC TALKS EDUCATIONAL ACADEMIC TALKS ABOUT MORE POTENTIAL USES ABOUT MORE POTENTIAL USES OF THESE MEDICATIONS. OF THESE MEDICATIONS. >> IT'S INTERESTING THAT THE >> IT'S INTERESTING THAT THE ANECDOTAL RESPONSES, ANECDOTAL RESPONSES, THEY'RE NOT JUST DRUGS THEY'RE NOT JUST DRUGS AND ALCOHOL. AND ALCOHOL. PEOPLE SAY THAT THEY FEEL PEOPLE SAY THAT THEY FEEL THEY'RE LESS COMPELLED TO SHOP, THEY'RE LESS COMPELLED TO SHOP, LESS COMPELLED TO DRINK COFFEE. LESS COMPELLED TO DRINK COFFEE. >> HOW SIGNIFICANT IS THAT? >> HOW SIGNIFICANT IS THAT? >> YOU KNOW, IT'S REALLY >> YOU KNOW, IT'S REALLY FASCINATING AND IT POTENTIALLY FASCINATING AND IT POTENTIALLY IS SIGNIFICANT WHEN SCIENTISTS IS SIGNIFICANT WHEN SCIENTISTS AND PHYSICIANS ARE LOOKING AND PHYSICIANS ARE LOOKING AT THESE HORMONES, THESE AT THESE HORMONES, THESE MEDICATIONS THAT ARE ACTING MEDICATIONS THAT ARE ACTING ON AGONISTS. ON AGONISTS. WE'VE BEEN TALKING A LOT, WE'VE BEEN TALKING A LOT, DIANE, ABOUT HOW THEY ACT DIANE, ABOUT HOW THEY ACT IN YOUR GUT. IN YOUR GUT. NOW COMES THE CONVERSATION NOW COMES THE CONVERSATION ABOUT WHAT IT MAY BE DOING ABOUT WHAT IT MAY BE DOING IN OUR BRAINS WHEN IT COMES IN OUR BRAINS WHEN IT COMES TO ADDICTIVE BEHAVIOR. TO ADDICTIVE BEHAVIOR. >> AND ONE THEORY IS THAT IT >> AND ONE THEORY IS THAT IT MAY ACTUALLY DECREASE MAY ACTUALLY DECREASE THE SATISFACTION THAT DOPAMINE THE SATISFACTION THAT DOPAMINE RESPONSE PEOPLE GET, WHETHER RESPONSE PEOPLE GET, WHETHER THEY'RE DRINKING AND IPA OR THEY'RE DRINKING AND IPA OR THEY'RE GOING ONLINE TO SHOP OR THEY'RE GOING ONLINE TO SHOP OR GAMBLE. GAMBLE. >> SO IT IS FASCINATING >> SO IT IS FASCINATING AND IT'S KIND OF JUST LETTING AND IT'S KIND OF JUST LETTING US REALIZE THAT AS WE US REALIZE THAT AS WE USE MEDICATIONS, THERE IS MORE USE MEDICATIONS, THERE IS MORE AND MORE SIDE EFFECTS REACTIONS AND MORE SIDE EFFECTS REACTIONS THAT MAY HAPPEN IN THE SAME WAY THAT MAY HAPPEN IN THE SAME WAY THAT THESE MEDICATIONS WERE THAT THESE MEDICATIONS WERE FIRST CREATED TO FIGHT FIRST CREATED TO FIGHT DIABETES. DIABETES. AND THEN ALL OF A SUDDEN AND THEN ALL OF A SUDDEN RESEARCHERS, WELL, PEOPLE ARE RESEARCHERS, WELL, PEOPLE ARE GETTING WEIGHT LOSS. GETTING WEIGHT LOSS. WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT? WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT? SO IT'S IMPORTANT IS AS WE SEE SO IT'S IMPORTANT IS AS WE SEE THESE PROPOSED BENEFITS, WE'RE THESE PROPOSED BENEFITS, WE'RE ALSO PAYING ATTENTION TO THE ALSO PAYING ATTENTION TO THE UNKNOWNS OF POTENTIAL SIDE UNKNOWNS OF POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS. EFFECTS. >> IT'S STILL EARLY DAYS FOR >> IT'S STILL EARLY DAYS FOR ALL OF THIS, TOO. ALL OF THIS, TOO. SO WHAT OTHER TREATMENT OPTIONS SO WHAT OTHER TREATMENT OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE FOR SUBSTANCE ARE AVAILABLE FOR SUBSTANCE ABUSE DISORDERS. ABUSE DISORDERS. >> WELL, THE MOST IMPORTANT >> WELL, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THING, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT PEOPLE DO IF THEY HAVE THAT PEOPLE DO IF THEY HAVE A CONCERN ABOUT SUBSTANCE A CONCERN ABOUT SUBSTANCE USE DISORDER, IS TALKING TO A USE DISORDER, IS TALKING TO A FRIEND, COLLEAGUE, ANYONE. FRIEND, COLLEAGUE, ANYONE. IT MAY BE TO PUSH YOU TO IT MAY BE TO PUSH YOU TO GO TALK TO A HEALTH CARE GO TALK TO A HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONAL. PROFESSIONAL. AND THERE ARE PROVEN AND THERE ARE PROVEN TREATMENTS, REGARDLESS OF WHAT TREATMENTS, REGARDLESS OF WHAT SUBSTANCE. SUBSTANCE. ON WHETHER THAT IS MEDICATION, ON WHETHER THAT IS MEDICATION, COUNSELING, COGNITIVE THERAPY. COUNSELING, COGNITIVE THERAPY. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT PEOPLE CAN DO IS GO THAT PEOPLE CAN DO IS GO AND SEEK HELP. AND SEEK HELP. AND IT'S IMPORTANT TO NOT JUST AND IT'S IMPORTANT TO NOT JUST LOOK AT HEADLINES OR ANECDOTAL LOOK AT HEADLINES OR ANECDOTAL . . YOU KNOW, ONE OF THESE STUDIES YOU KNOW, ONE OF THESE STUDIES ACTUALLY LOOKED AT SOCIAL MEDIA ACTUALLY LOOKED AT SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS IS THE HEART OF ANECDOTE, POSTS IS THE HEART OF ANECDOTE, PEOPLE SELF-REPORTING. PEOPLE SELF-REPORTING. BUT THAT YOU'RE SUFFERING FROM BUT THAT YOU'RE SUFFERING FROM SUBSTANCE USE DISORDER. SUBSTANCE USE DISORDER. YOU DON'T JUST LOOK AT THESE YOU DON'T JUST LOOK AT THESE REPORTS AND THINK THAT WORKS REPORTS AND THINK THAT WORKS FOR YOU. FOR YOU. >> INDIVIDUALIZED TREATMENT >> INDIVIDUALIZED TREATMENT IS BEST. IS BEST. THERE IS A LOT OUT THERE THERE IS A LOT OUT THERE ON THESE DRUGS RIGHT NOW AND A ON THESE DRUGS RIGHT NOW AND A LOT OF HOPE BEING RAISED FOR, LOT OF HOPE BEING RAISED FOR, WHAT THEY CAN DO. WHAT THEY CAN DO. BUT ALSO, AS YOU MENTIONED, BUT ALSO, AS YOU MENTIONED, A LOT OF SIDE EFFECTS. A LOT OF SIDE EFFECTS. SO HOW PEOPLE EVALUATE WHETHER SO HOW PEOPLE EVALUATE WHETHER OR NOT THEY ARE A GOOD OR NOT THEY ARE A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR OR SENT BACK OR CANDIDATE FOR OR SENT BACK OR A DRUG LIKE IT. A DRUG LIKE IT. >> OUR HOPE IS A GOOD THING. >> OUR HOPE IS A GOOD THING. I WOULD STAND BY THAT. I WOULD STAND BY THAT. BUT YOU'RE RIGHT. BUT YOU'RE RIGHT. AS WE LOOK AT HEADLINES, WE'RE AS WE LOOK AT HEADLINES, WE'RE STARTING TO SEE STARTING TO SEE THAT SEMAGLUTIDE ARE LINKED THAT SEMAGLUTIDE ARE LINKED TO A DECREASED RISK OF STROKE, TO A DECREASED RISK OF STROKE, HEART DISEASE. HEART DISEASE. NOW WE'RE TALKING ABOUT ALCOHOL NOW WE'RE TALKING ABOUT ALCOHOL USE DISORDER IN ADDITION USE DISORDER IN ADDITION TO TYPE TWO DIABETES AND IN TO TYPE TWO DIABETES AND IN TREATING WEIGHT GAIN TREATING WEIGHT GAIN AND OBESITY. AND OBESITY. AND WHAT THIS HAS LED TO IS A AND WHAT THIS HAS LED TO IS A LOT OF PEOPLE SEEKING THEM FOR LOT OF PEOPLE SEEKING THEM FOR OFF LABEL USE OR IN SITUATIONS OFF LABEL USE OR IN SITUATIONS WHEN THEY MAY NOT ACTUALLY NEED WHEN THEY MAY NOT ACTUALLY NEED THEM. THEM. SO WHAT'S IMPORTANT IS THAT SO WHAT'S IMPORTANT IS THAT PEOPLE REMEMBER THAT OVER PEOPLE REMEMBER THAT OVER WILLINGLY. WILLINGLY. THESE MEDICATIONS ARE FDA THESE MEDICATIONS ARE FDA APPROVED FOR TYPE TWO DIABETES APPROVED FOR TYPE TWO DIABETES AND OBESITY OR A CERTAIN AMOUNT AND OBESITY OR A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF WEIGHT GAIN. OF WEIGHT GAIN. IT'S IMPORTANT YOU TAKE THEM IT'S IMPORTANT YOU TAKE THEM UNDER A PHYSICIAN'S GUIDANCE UNDER A PHYSICIAN'S GUIDANCE BECAUSE THERE'S A LOT WE DON'T BECAUSE THERE'S A LOT WE DON'T KNOW IN TERMS OF LONG TERM KNOW IN TERMS OF LONG TERM SAFETY, EFFICACY AND, DOSE SAFETY, EFFICACY AND, DOSE RESPONSE FOR SOME OF THE OFF RESPONSE FOR SOME OF THE OFF LABEL USE. LABEL USE. SO IT'S BEST TO STICK WITH THE SO IT'S BEST TO STICK WITH THE PROTOCOL AND DO WHAT'S SAFE FOR PROTOCOL AND DO WHAT'S SAFE FOR YOU. YOU. BUT I'M PROUD THAT ANYONE OUT BUT I'M PROUD THAT ANYONE OUT THERE WHO NEEDS HELP IS HAVING THERE WHO NEEDS HELP IS HAVING THE CONVERSATION. THE CONVERSATION. >> ALL RIGHT, LOVE IT. >> ALL RIGHT, LOVE IT. ABC NEWS MEDICAL CONTRIBUTOR ABC NEWS MEDICAL CONTRIBUTOR DR. ALOK PATEL. DR. ALOK PATEL.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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