Drug therapy for obesity

In the treatment of obesity and severe overweight - in combination with the basic program (nutritional therapy, exercise therapy, behavioral therapy) - weight-reducing medication is also an option.

There is not a large selection of safe weight loss drugs that can also be used in the long term without significant side effects. It is also important that drug therapies are not used in isolation, but always in combination with lifestyle changes.

The drugs currently approved for weight loss in Switzerland are primarily:


The drug Orlistat is approved for the treatment of obesity. The active ingredient inhibits the enzyme lipase in the intestine. This enzyme is responsible for breaking down certain fats (triglycerides). Without the enzyme, the body cannot absorb and utilize triglycerides. Orlistat reduces fat intake by around 30 percent. Those affected can also reduce their weight by around three to four kilograms with Orlistat.


The second drug approved in Switzerland for the treatment of obesity is liraglutide. The active ingredient is similar to a natural satiety hormone. Thanks to the medication, the stomach empties less quickly after meals and hunger is less likely to return. Those affected can also reduce their weight by around seven to ten kilograms with liraglutide.

The medicines mentioned are prescription-only and are prescribed by a doctor.

The so-called “slimming injection” involves various medications that are injected to treat obesity. The active ingredients reduce the feeling of hunger and at the same time prolong the feeling of satiety. As a result, those affected eat less and lose weight. Originally, the two best-known active ingredients (liraglutide and semaglutide) were developed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, as they lower blood glucose levels. They are now also approved for weight loss and are covered by health insurance for the treatment of obesity in certain cases.

To the story “Injections against severe obesity”

For patients

In the obesity consultation, we discuss individual diet and exercise measures and evaluate drug and surgical therapies. Due to the large number of requests, only referrals from your doctor are currently possible.

Tel. +41 43 254 04 44
Mail azz@usz.ch
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For referrering physicians

Leading experts in the field of obesity from a wide range of disciplines work closely together to define a customized treatment pathway for your patients. We look forward to your assignment.

Tel. +41 43 254 04 44
Mail azz@usz.ch
Assign online