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How One Woman Turned Type 2 Diabetes Into a Wake-up Call

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Meet Nikki M., registered nurse, mom, military wife, and avid tennis player. She is also one of about 32 million people in the United States living with type 2 diabetes.[a] To see Nikki today, you wouldn’t expect her to be someone who once struggled to maintain a healthy lifestyle. She’s incredibly active and eats a well-balanced diet. But it wasn’t always that way. After years of juggling a hectic schedule and putting everyone else in her life first, the stress finally caught up.

A mother of two, whose husband was frequently deployed by the Kentucky Air National Guard, Nikki became used to managing a busy and family-first life single-handedly. “There’s a lot of added pressure when your partner is not there to share in the stresses and celebrations that come with raising children.” But in 2019, her role as sole caregiver was stretched to the max. After work, childcare and tending to home responsibilities, Nikki had little to no time left for self-care, sticking to a consistent meal plan or finding the time to exercise. “At the time, I was just being a mom and not taking care of myself or really anything else.” She even stopped doing something she loved most, playing tennis.

Gradually, her health started to take a downturn. Usually an upbeat and outgoing person, Nikki started noticing that she wasn’t feeling like her old racket-wielding self anymore. “I was on edge and sluggish, I was snappier with my kids, I was tired and would nap a lot. I gained a lot of weight.” Years of ignoring her own health were taking a toll.

In December 2020, Nikki went for her annual health checkup and was told that her blood sugar levels were higher than they should be, now for the second year in a row. As a nurse, she recognized the warning signs. She had to face an uncomfortable truth—that she may have type 2 diabetes, and she knew what the condition could do to someone if left untreated. Nikki knew she couldn’t ignore the issue any longer. She took action and found an endocrinologist, who diagnosed her with type 2 diabetes.

The diagnosis was heartbreaking, but she wasn’t going to let type 2 diabetes define her. She reset her priorities and started putting her health first. Initially, Nikki was put on metformin along with lifestyle modifications, but it wasn't getting her to her blood sugar goal. Nikki worked with her endocrinologist to create a revised treatment plan that included taking RYBELSUS® (semaglutide) tablets 7 mg, along with being more active and making better food choices. Her blood sugar control started to take a turn for the better. RYBELSUS® is a prescription medicine that can improve blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes, along with diet and exercise. From the very first day after her diagnosis, Nikki was determined to stick to her newfound self-care plan and get her blood sugar back on track. Because RYBELSUS® is taken only once each day, Nikki was able to incorporate it into her daily routine.

Her persistence and commitment have paid off. After a few months of incorporating RYBELSUS® into her daily routine, along with the changes she was able to make to her diet and exercise plan, she has seen an improvement in her blood sugar levels. Nikki has also made time for doing the things she loves. She walks every day and plays tennis with her best friends two to three times a week. She also joined a local gym and started cooking more meals at home.

Nikki’s proactive attitude and desire to be a role model for her children motivated her to take ownership of her type 2 diabetes. Her story shows us that, with determination and commitment to taking charge of your health, type 2 diabetes can be managed. Nikki is just one of a growing number of people who prove that type 2 diabetes doesn’t have to control your life but the diagnosis itself can be a wake-up call to make changes in your life.

What is RYBELSUS®?

RYBELSUS® (semaglutide) tablets 7 mg or 14 mg is a prescription medicine used along with diet and exercise to improve blood sugar (glucose) in adults with type 2 diabetes.

  • RYBELSUS® is not recommended as the first choice of medicine for treating diabetes
  • It is not known if RYBELSUS® can be used in people who have had pancreatitis
  • RYBELSUS® is not for use in people with type 1 diabetes
  • It is not known if RYBELSUS® is safe and effective for use in children under 18 years of age

Important Safety Information

What is the most important information I should know about RYBELSUS®?

RYBELSUS® may cause serious side effects, including:

  • Possible thyroid tumors, including cancer. Tell your healthcare provider if you get a lump or swelling in your neck, hoarseness, trouble swallowing, or shortness of breath. These may be symptoms of thyroid cancer. In studies with rodents, RYBELSUS® and medicines that work like RYBELSUS® caused thyroid tumors, including thyroid cancer. It is not known if RYBELSUS® will cause thyroid tumors or a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) in people

Do not use RYBELSUS® if:

  • you or any of your family have ever had MTC, or if you have an endocrine system condition called Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2)
  • you have had a serious allergic reaction to semaglutide or any of the ingredients in RYBELSUS®. See symptoms of serious allergic reaction in “What are the possible side effects of RYBELSUS®?”

Before using RYBELSUS®, tell your healthcare provider if you have any other medical conditions, including if you:

  • have or have had problems with your pancreas or kidneys
  • have a history of vision problems related to your diabetes
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if RYBELSUS® will harm your unborn baby. You should stop using RYBELSUS® 2 months before you plan to become pregnant. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to control your blood sugar if you plan to become pregnant or while you are pregnant
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Breastfeeding is not recommended during treatment with RYBELSUS®

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. RYBELSUS® may affect the way some medicines work and some medicines may affect the way RYBELSUS® works.

How should I take RYBELSUS®?

  • Take RYBELSUS® exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to
  • Take RYBELSUS® by mouth on an empty stomach when you first wake up with a sip of plain water (no more than 4 ounces)
  • Do not split, crush, or chew. Swallow RYBELSUS® whole
  • After 30 minutes, you can eat, drink, or take other oral medicines
  • If you miss a dose of RYBELSUS®, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule

What are the possible side effects of RYBELSUS®?

RYBELSUS® may cause serious side effects, including:

  • inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis). Stop using RYBELSUS® and call your healthcare provider right away if you have severe pain in your stomach area (abdomen) that will not go away, with or without vomiting. You may feel the pain from your abdomen to your back
  • changes in vision. Tell your healthcare provider if you have changes in vision during treatment with RYBELSUS®
  • low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Your risk for getting low blood sugar may be higher if you use RYBELSUS® with another medicine that can cause low blood sugar, such as a sulfonylurea or insulin. Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar may include: dizziness or lightheadedness, blurred vision, anxiety, irritability or mood changes, sweating, slurred speech, hunger, confusion or drowsiness, shakiness, weakness, headache, fast heartbeat, and feeling jittery
  • kidney problems (kidney failure). In people who have kidney problems, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting may cause a loss of fluids (dehydration), which may cause kidney problems to get worse. It is important for you to drink fluids to help reduce your chance of dehydration
  • serious allergic reactions. Stop using RYBELSUS® and get medical help right away, if you have any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat; problems breathing or swallowing; severe rash or itching; fainting or feeling dizzy; or very rapid heartbeat

The most common side effects of RYBELSUS® may include nausea, stomach (abdominal) pain, diarrhea, decreased appetite, vomiting, and constipation. Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea are most common when you first start RYBELSUS®.

Please see Prescribing Information and Medication Guide for RYBELSUS®.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Visit Rybelsus.com to learn more.


[a] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Type 2 Diabetes. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/type2.html. Last accessed: September 2021

RYBELSUS® is a registered trademark of Novo Nordisk A/S.

Novo Nordisk is a registered trademark of Novo Nordisk A/S.

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