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MEDIA ADVISORY: Cedars-Sinai Experts Available to Discuss Safety, Benefits of Using Medications to Lose Weight

What We Know—And Don’t Know—About Using Increasingly Popular Weight Loss Medications Such as Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro


The science is unclear on exactly why an increasingly popular new class of federally approved diabetes and obesity medications work, but they do know that they are effective at helping people lose weight. The medications are sold under brand names Ozempic, Wegovy and Mounjaro. 

A recent article in The New York Times, “We Know Where New Weight Loss Drugs Came From, but Not Why They Work,” explores the subject and says, “Researchers discovered by accident that exposing the brain to a natural hormone at levels never seen in nature elicited weight loss. They really don’t know why, or if the drugs may have any long-term side effects.”

Obesity is an epidemic in the United States, with 42% of adults having a BMI over 30 (which qualifies as overweight), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  

Cedars-Sinai experts are available to share insight on these medications.


Amanda Velazquez, MD, is an internal medicine physician and director of Obesity Medicine at Cedars-Sinai. Velazquez specializes in weight management and metabolic health and is available to discuss what patients should know if they are taking or considering taking weight loss medications.

**Velazquez is available for interviews in Spanish and English**

Martha Gulati, MD, MS is a cardiologist in the Barbra Streisand Women’s Heart Center at the Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars-Sinai, where she also serves as director of Preventive Cardiology. Gulati, president of the American Society of Preventive Cardiology, specializes in women’s heart health and is available to discuss how weight loss, including the use of medications, can protect against heart disease and heart attack. She can also discuss general risk factors and prevention of heart disease—the leading cause of death in the U.S. for men and women.

Cindy Wu, PharmD, BCPS, APh, is a clinical pharmacist at Cedars-Sinai and program coordinator in the Department of Pharmacy Services. Wu’s expertise includes specialty medications used to treat complex and chronic conditions that require special monitoring, administration and handling. Wu is available to discuss the importance of patients understanding their medications, taking them correctly and being monitored while taking them.

Velazquez, Gulati and Wu are available for media interviews and can answer questions like:

  • Should patients who are taking these medications be concerned that medical science doesn’t know why they work?
  • What should patients know about the side effects?
  • How long should a patient stay on weight-management medications?
  • If patients stop taking the medication, will they gain the weight back?
  • What benefits do these medications provide, beyond weight loss?
  • Should these medications be considered a preventive health measure and if so, for whom?
  • What do patients need to know before taking these weight loss medications?
  • How are patients monitored while taking weight loss medications?


Obesity is an epidemic in the United States, with 42% of adults having a BMI over 30 (which qualifies as overweight), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Obesity is a risk factor for diseases including hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, osteoarthritis, mental illness and many types of cancer. 


Cedars-Sinai can accommodate virtual interview formats via Zoom, FaceTime and Skype.


Melissa Vizcarra | 719-502-5001 | Melissa.Vizcarra@cshs.org

Cara Martinez | 310‐562‐7821 | Cara.Martinez@cshs.org