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What You Need to Know About Avandia

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What You Need to Know About Avandia

Avandia is a medication for Type 2 diabetes that is sometimes used along with other medications to treat the disease. It is an oral diabetes medicine that helps control blood sugar levels by making the cells of the body more sensitive to the action of insulin.

What is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar. There is no cure for Type 2 diabetes, but the disease can be managed or even prevented by eating healthy, exercising, and maintaining a healthy weight. However, diet and exercise may not be enough; you may need diabetes medications or insulin therapy to manage your blood sugar. When you have Type 2 diabetes, your body doesn’t produce enough insulin to maintain a normal glucose level or your body is resistant to the effects of insulin. Insulin is a hormone that regulates the movement of sugar into your cells.

Symptoms of Type 2 diabetes may develop slowly, some people even have the disease and don’t know it for years. Symptoms include:

  • Blurred vision: Caused by high blood sugar, fluid may be pulled from the lenses of your eyes.
  • Weight loss: You may notice yourself eating more than usual but still losing weight. Your body does not have the ability to use glucose so the body uses alternative fuels stored in muscle and fat.
  • Fatigue: You can become tired and irritable if your cells are deprived of sugar.
  • Increased hunger: Due to the lack of insulin to move sugar into your cells, your muscles and organs become depleted for energy and this causes intense hunger.
  • Increased thirst and frequent urination: With an excess of sugar building up in your bloodstream, fluid is pulled from the tissues which make you thirstier than usual. The added intake of fluids also causes you to urinate more.
  • Slow-healing sores or frequent infections: Your ability to heal and resist infections is affected.
  • Areas of darkened skin: Some, not all, people with Type 2 diabetes have seen patches of dark, velvety skin in the folds and creases of their bodies, mainly the armpits and neck. This can be a sign of insulin resistance.

Avandia is not the same as other diabetes medications. It helps your body use its own natural insulin better for improved blood sugar control. Most diabetes medications help your body to create more insulin.

Combining Avandia with diet, exercise, and sometimes with other diabetes medications can improve blood sugar control. However, you should not take Avandia when using insulin or nitrates. Many people need to take more than one medication to help treat diabetes.

You should not use Avandia if you have Type 1 diabetes. Consult with your doctor before taking Avandia if you have:

  • Congestive heart failure
  • Heart Disease
  • A history of heart attack or stroke
  • Liver disease
  • Eye problems caused by diabetes
Avandia and Pregnancy

Avandia can be harmful to an unborn baby, however, it is not known if the medication can be passed into breast milk or if it can be harmful to a nursing baby. Consult with your doctor if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.

Some women using Avandia have started having menstrual periods, even if they have not had a period in a long time due to a medical condition. This may allow you to become pregnant while taking Avandia so you must consult with your doctor about the need for birth control.

Possible side effects of Avandia may include:

  • Gradual weight gain
  • Swelling or rapid weight gain
  • Feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion
  • Pale skin
  • Back pain
  • Easy bruising or bleeding
  • Mild diarrhea
  • Weakness
  • Increased thirst or hunger, urinating more than usual
  • Headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Low fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark urine
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Jaundice (Yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Cough
  • Chest pain or heavy feeling
  • Pain spreading to the arm or shoulder
  • Sweating
  • General ill feeling

Possible allergic reaction symptoms include:

  • Hives
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Swelling of your face, lips, tongue or throat

If you experience any of these side effects stop using Avandia and call your doctor immediately.

Does Avandia work with other medications?

If you are taking any other forms of medication, including vitamins and minerals you should consult with your doctor before taking Avandia. Avandia has a unique history coinciding with other drugs. Because Avandia is a Type 2 diabetes drug that only helps the body use its own natural insulin rather than create insulin-like other drugs, you may see Avandia combined with different diabetes medications. Avandia can and does work well with certain medications, however, there are several medications you should not take with Avandia, so to be safe check with your doctor before combining drugs.

The true danger of Avandia

Avandia does have serious side effects, however, most of the side effects can be noticed quickly and addressed by your doctor. Diabetes and Type 2 diabetes are serious illnesses with serious and harmful consequences if left untreated. While every drug has side effects, you have to weigh the options with your doctor to make the best and safest decision.

Other Avandia Info

Avandia has a history of both light and severe side effects. If you experience any of these side effects you should stop taking Avandia immediately and consult with your doctor. Preexisting conditions such as congestive heart failure or heart disease, liver disease, a history of heart attack or stroke, or eye problems caused by diabetes.

While some side effects can be mild and not noticeable right away, you should pay attention to any gradual changes your body may experience as a warning sign to possibly more harmful side effects.

Avandia Legal Info

Since 2007 the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has discovered potential safety concerns with Type 2 diabetes drug Avandia. GlaxoSmithKline, the makers of the drug Avandia, did not originally disclose detailed information about potential side effects. Possible harmful side effects include:

  • Stroke
  • Severe allergic reaction
  • Liver toxicity
  • Heart attack
  • Congestive heart failure

Avandia is a type 2 diabetes drug, however, it acts differently than other Type 2 diabetes drugs. While other drugs help the body to create more insulin, Avandia actually helps the body use its own natural insulin. This difference allows Avandia to work with other drugs to treat Type 2 diabetes.

Side effects due to other medications are a possibility, as well as side effects due to the combination of Avandia and other medications. Before combining Avandia with any other medications, type 2 diabetes medications, or other forms of medication, consult with your doctor about possible risks. If you notice any of the mild side effects stop taking Avandia immediately and consult with your doctor.

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DISCLAIMER: This document is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a Retainer/Services Agreement. No attorney-client relationship will exist between you and our firm unless and until we enter into a signed Retainer/Services Agreement. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be medical or legal advice. Do not stop taking any medication without consulting your physician.

Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 5.11.20]