Pioglitazone Tablets (Generic Actos)
What is Pioglitazone Medication?
Pioglitazone is a drug that acts as a supplement to the exercises and diet with the goal of controlling the amount of glucose in blood especially in adults with type 2 diabetes. The drug is used under specific conditions.
Pioglitazone has an antihyperglycemic effect which can only with the availability of endogenous insulin. This means that the drug will not be effective if this insulin is not available. For this reason, it should not be used as a remedy to type 1 diabetes because of unfavorable conditions.
Pioglitazone is available in the market under different brand names and the most popular one is Actos.
Dosages of Pioglitazone
Pioglitazone comes in three different tablets of 15mg, 30mg, and 45mg.
Here are the dosage requirements that you should follow:
Dosage for Diabetes Mellitus
This dosage is indicated as a monotherapy that is accompanied with insulin and even insulin secretagogues. Here you are supposed to take 15 mg or 30 mg of the drug orally. It is advisable to take it with a meal on a daily basis. You can then increase the dosage to 45mg daily but you should carefully monitor your reaction.
Monitoring of the results should start immediately you start taking the drug, after every month, and at an interval of three months.
Modification of the Dosage
Here are some of the modifications that can be applied to the dosage:
- Administering it with an insulin secretagogue or sulfonylurea: This will lead to a reduction in the insulin secretagogue
- Administering it with insulin: This method involves decreasing the insulin
- Taking it with a potent CYP2C8 inhibitor: With this dosage, you should limit the dosage to a maximum of 15 mg per day
It is not advisable to use Pioglitazone use for a pediatric purpose.
Pioglitazone Tablets Side Effects
- Swelling (edema). This can happen when the drug is used together with insulin or sulfonylurea
- Respiratory infection
- A headache
- Low levels of sugar in blood
- An acute cardiac failure
- Sinus disease
- A sore throat
- Fracture bone
- Macular edema( diabetic swelling on the eye)
- Bladder cancer
- Aggravated diabetes
- Increased cholesterol levels
- Blurred vision
- Decreased hemoglobin in the blood
- Reduction of serum triglycerides
- Significant weight gain
- Loss of appetite
- Urine stained with
- Feeling itchy
- Abdominal pain
- Dark urine
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin)
- Increased levels of amino acids
- Tooth problem
- Back pain
- Symptoms of cold such as sneezing, running nose and coughing
Liver failure is a rare side effect of pioglitazone.
These are just some of the potential side effects of pioglitazone. There could be other effects that are not listed here. It is advisable to consult your doctor for more side effects.
Pioglitazone Interaction With Other Drugs
Once your physician has advises you to start using pioglitazone, he/she is fully aware of the possible interaction between this medication and other drugs. Your doctor will be in a good position to monitor how you react to the interactions. For this reason, you should not start or make any adjustments to the dosage without consulting the doctor.
To date, pioglitazone has not been proven to have any extreme interactions with other prescribed drugs. It reacts severely with eluxadoline and ethanol. However, it has mild interactions with not less 78 different drugs and inconsequential interactions with not less than 135 drugs.
Take note that this data does not cover all the potential interactions or detrimental effects of the interactions. For safety purpose, ensure that you disclose to your doctor about all drugs that you are using. You should also gather more information from health experts about the effects of the interaction with other drugs.
Pioglitazone can cause heart failure or complication. This mostly affects people who have a history of being affected by heart-related complications.
A patient who has just started using the drugs or has increased the dosage should be monitored closely for symptoms of heart failure. The symptoms include abnormal weight gain, swelling, shortness of breath among others. If these symptoms are discovered, the standard care for heart complications should be applied. There should be discontinuation of the medication or reduction of the dosage. The choice of the solution will depend on the severity of the reaction.
Patients exhibiting typical signs of heart failure should not use the drug. This is because pioglitazone can trigger severe symptoms in such patients. Also, desist from taking the drug if you are allergic to its ingredients. As a standard safety precaution, keep the drug away from the kids. In case of an overdose, seek immediate medical attention.
Pioglitazone should not be used under the following situations:
- When a patient is hypersensitive to the drug
- Diabetic ketoacidosis
- Acute heart failure
Patients with liver disease or whose ALT that is more than the ULN should not be given this medication. At any given time, the ALT should not be 3 times more than the ULN.
You should also monitor symptoms of heart failure as the treatment is not recommended to such patients. Most symptoms of heart failure are easily noticeable hence it won’t be difficult to know that a patient is not okay.
The drug should be used with extra caution especially by premenopausal or ovulatory females. The drug can make such women resume ovulating hence increasing chance of pregnancy. A doctor should have a candid discussion about any potential of an unplanned pregnancy with an anovulatory woman.
The drug should not be prescribed to patients with bladder cancer. Do a physical test to determine if the patient has bladder cancer.
Pregnant and Lactating Mothers
There is very little information about the effects of pioglitazone on pregnant women. It has not been proven that the drug can cause birth effects or pregnancy complications. However, poorly managed diabetes can have a negative impact on both the pregnant mother and the fetus. It can cause stillbirth, macrosomia, preterm delivery and even miscarriage.
To date, no information has been produced about the existence of pioglitazone in human milk. There is also no data about its effects on the milk production or the risks to an infant who is breastfed. The advantages of breastfeeding a kid should be given full attention while at the same time ensuring that both the infant and the lactating mother are not affected by the negative effects of pioglitazone.
Pioglitazone Generic Price
The generic price of an oral pioglitazone is $10.20. Since a 15 mg contains 30 tablets, you will pay not less than $300.