A number of popular weight loss drugs have hit the market in recent years—including Wegovy and Mounjaro. Both have similar effects but with some key differences in how you take them, where you can access them, and how much they cost.
Here, we break down all the factors you need to make a decision around whether Wegovy and Mounjaro are right for you.
Wegovy vs Mounjaro: What are they?
The key difference between Wegovy and Mounjaro is what they are made of. Wegovy is a drug called semaglutide, while Mounjaro is a drug called tirzepatide. There are some key difference to note between these.
Both semaglutide and tirzepatide belong to the class of medicine called GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1) analogs. GLP-1s mimic incretin, a naturally occurring gut hormone which is released after you have eaten. This has a number of effects, including suppressing your appetite, leaving you feeling fuller for longer and decreasing the perceived reward of eating. This is why they have gained popularity as effective medication for weight loss.
While Wegovy just contains GLP-1s, Mounjaro (and tirzepatide) contains both GLP-1 and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP). GIP has additional effects of reducing fat accumulation, increasing bone formation, increasing glucagon production, and reducing acid secretion in the stomach.
Wegovy vs Mounjaro: Which is more effective?
If you are comparing the two drugs, it’s reasonable to weigh up a number of factors in making your decision: effectiveness, however, ranks as a key point of comparison.
Initial trials would indicate that Mounjaro is more effective for weight loss than semaglutide (AKA Wegovy). A 2023 study found that tirzepatide resulted in a weight loss of 17.8%, compared to 12.4% for semaglutide .
In addition, Mounjaro is found to have wider cardiovascular and metabolic benefits, such as waist circumference, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and fasting insulin and lipid concentrations. 
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Wegovy vs Mounjaro: dosage
Both Wegovy and Mounjaro come in the form of an injection pen, which you can administer yourself. Both drugs are taken once a week, in a single-use pen (enough for just one injection).
Wegovy has a more gradual process for increasing titration. You start at 0.25mg for weeks 1 to 4, increasing to 0.5mg for weeks 5 to 8, up to 1mg for weeks 9 to 12, 1.7mg for weeks 13 to 17, then remaining at 2.4mg (the maximum concentration) from then onwards. 
For Mounjaro, it’s simpler. You start at a 2.5mg concentration for the first four weeks, then increase up to 5mg for at least the next four weeks (or as long as you decide to stay on the medication).
Wegovy vs Mounjaro: accessibility
Who can access them, and where, is a key factor in deciding between Wegovy and Mounjaro.
For those in the UK, there is a key difference: Wegovy is currently available, while Mounjaro is not. Wegovy has very recently been made available on the NHS, offered as part of a specialist weight management service and prescribed alongside a reduced calorie diet and exercise programme. To qualify for prescription, you must have a BMI of over 30 with at least one weight related comorbidity. For those who don’t qualify, you can still get Wegovy through a private prescription—through online pharmacies or digital health platforms like Habitual.
Mounjaro, while not currently available in the UK, looks set to hit the shelves in the coming months. It has very recently received approval by NICE, the UK watchdog for healthcare cost-effectiveness. Not only does this mean it will be available on private prescription, after its final report is published on October 11th, it will be made available for prescription on the NHS within 90 days.
Wegovy vs Mounjaro: cost
Given that Wegovy is currently available, and Mounjaro isn’t, it’s difficult to compare the cost of the two.
Wegovy, if accessed through the NHS, comes at the NHS prescription cost (currently £9.65 per item). If you are buying it privately, it costs significantly more. Through Habitual, depending on where you are buying it, Wegovy costs between £200-£300 a month—that works out as £50-£75 per pen. This comes with a dedicated Patient Care Team, a custom-built tracking app, access to peer support groups, and content and exercises.
It is hard to say how much Mounjaro will cost. That said, a trial comparing tirzepatide and semaglutide found that tirzepatide was much more cost effective than semaglutide :
- For tirzepatide, the cost needed to treat per 1% of body weight reduction is estimated at $985
- For semaglutide, this is estimated at $1845
How this will be reflected in pricing is difficult to predict, however.
 Azuri, J., Hammerman, A., Alboalhasan, E., et al (2023). Tirzepatide versus semaglutide for weight loss in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: A value for money analysis, Diabetes Obes Metab Apr 2023; 25(4):961-964. Accessible here
 Diabetes drug results in substantial weight loss in people with obesity, study finds, BMJ, published 7th June 2022. Accessible here
 Wegovy dosing schedule for adults. Wegovy, retrieved September 8th 2023. Accessible here
 How to use Mounjaro, mounjaro.com, retrieved September 8th 2023. Accessible here