Alogliptin (Oral)

Alogliptin (Nesina) Oral is a medication which is used to help control glucose levels of patients who have type II diabetes.

Overview

Alogliptin is a medication which is used to help treat excessive blood sugar levels which occur as a result of type 2 diabetes. The medication works to increase the substances in the body that prompt the pancreas to produce insulin. By encouraging the production of insulin, the body is able to control blood sugar levels. In addition, Alogliptin also prompts the liver to cease to produce glucose when there are excessive levels in the body. This medication is intended solely to treat type 2 diabetes and is not effective in the treatment of type 1 insulin-dependent diabetes.

Alogliptin is a medication in a class that is known as dipeptidyl peptidase-4 or DPP-4 inhibitors. It is used to prevent diabetic ketoacidosis which occurs when continuously high blood sugar isn't properly treated and prevented. When used properly, it can help individuals effectively control blood sugar levels throughout the day and prevent damage to the body's organs and improve the overall ability to function properly.

Some of the common problems that people who have diabetes encounter over the course of time include nerve damage, eye damage and problems with vision, heart disease, stroke, and kidney problems. Alogliptin is thought to help decrease a person's odds of having a stroke, heart attack, or other issues such as kidney failure, decreased sexual ability, numbness, tingling, nerve damage, gum disease, loss of vision, and kidney failure.

Alogliptin should be taken once daily orally and can be taken with or without food. If you have a sudden change in your diet or exercise routine you may need to have your medication dose adjusted to compensate for possible changes in your blood sugar levels. Make sure to check with your doctor to determine if you are taking any medications that may interact with alogliptin. If you have pancreas or liver disorders, you may need to take a different medication to help prevent further damage to your organs. Some individuals with decreased kidney function may take alogliptin under the close supervision of their doctor. The dose will have to be adjusted to compensate for this decrease in kidney function.

Alogliptin should be stored in a safe place away from pets and children, as well as in a dry and cool environment. If you miss a dose you should take it as soon as you remember, or if your next dose schedule has arrived only take one dose rather than taking two. Alogliptin is effective for helping individuals control their blood sugar when they use this medication in conjunction with a healthy diet and regular exercise. Do not take alogliptin if you drink heavily and always discuss taking alogliptin with your healthcare professional first. Alogliptin also carries an increased risk of heart failure and should be discussed with your doctor before you begin your type II diabetes therapy with this medication. If you have any questions or concerns you should address them with your doctor before you begin taking alogliptin. If you change your medications or diet you should consult your doctor.

Condition treated

  • Type II diabetes

Type of medicine

  • Glucose stabilizer

Side effects

Some of the more common side effects associated with Alogliptin include:

Anxiety

Anxiety can range from extreme to mild with the use of this medication. If you find that your anxiety is not easily managed, you should consult your physician to help determine what your options are for treatment. There may be some medications which alleviate the symptoms that your doctor can prescribe, or he may opt to change your diabetes treatment depending on your individual situation.

Blurred vision

Blurred vision is a common symptom associated with the use of Alogliptin. If your vision drastically changes or becomes increasingly worse, you should immediately notify your health care professional so they can monitor your situation for any developments or possible serious life-threatening situations.

Chills

You may experience chills with this medication, especially when you are adjusting to it in the first few weeks. Keep your physician informed about these symptoms in order for them to adjust your particular course of treatment to help relieve chills, if possible.

Pale skin

Pale skin is a common side effect, but if you experience a sudden change or your color is not normal without warning, then you should immediately proceed to the nearest emergency room and have them notify your doctor. This could indicate a serious or potentially life-threatening situation that requires immediate attention.

Depression

Depression, if already existing, can worsen with this drug. If you haven't experienced depression previously and it develops once you begin taking this medication, you should let your doctor know right away so they can adjust your therapy or prescribe a medication to help with this issue. If you begin to feel suicidal or have suicidal thoughts, you should seek help immediately.

Dizziness

If the dizziness is mild it may be part of an adjustment period, but if you are experiencing severe symptoms you should alert your doctor and work with them to find a treatment plan that is more tolerable. If you faint or lose consciousness you should seek emergency attention right away.

Nausea

You may experience bouts of nausea related to taking Alogliptin. This is more likely to occur during the first few weeks of taking the medication. If your symptoms persist or become worse, alert your doctor so they can adjust your dose or prescribe a different medication.

Nightmares

It is common for people to have nightmares as a result of taking Alogliptin. This is especially true for people who first begin taking the medication.

Seizures

This serious side effect can happen and should be treated as an emergency. If you experience a seizure as a result of Alogliptin, you should proceed to your emergency room and alert your doctor.

Shakiness

Shakiness is a common side effect of this medication. Most people report a period of adjustment during the initial phase of their treatment. If shakiness is experienced for a prolonged period of time, your doctor may want to alter your drug treatment plan.

Slurred speech

Slurred speech may be a side effect of alogliptin, but it should be monitored closely. Slurred speech may indicate a life-threatening issue that may require emergency treatment. Always inform your doctor about slurred speech to help create a better treatment plan.

Tiredness or weakness

You may experience unusual tiredness when you begin your treatment with Alogliptin. Weakness may also be experienced either by itself or in conjunction with tiredness.

Uncommon side effects include:

Chest pain

Chest pain may be a side effect of the drug, but if your chest pain suddenly becomes severe or you notice pain radiating to your neck, arms, or back, you should go to the emergency room immediately because it could be a sign of a life threating situation such as a heart attack.

Decreased urine output

If you continue to drink fluid regularly but are not urinating as much as you did before beginning alogliptin, you should inform your doctor so they can monitor your kidney function.

Dilated neck veins

This drug may cause the veins in your neck to dilate and become more prominent.

Extreme fatigue

Extreme fatigue is an extreme feeling of tiredness that may make it difficult to carry out everyday activities and functions. If you experience this side effect while taking alogliptin you should talk to your doctor.

Irregular breathing

Irregular breathing may be an indication of a serious health problem. If you have irregular breathing you should monitor the condition with the assistance of your doctors or nurses. Always go to the emergency room if you have trouble breathing or a tightness in your chest.

Irregular heartbeat

Arythmia is the existence of an irregular heartbeat and should be closely monitored if you have this side effect as a result of taking alogliptin. You may need to have your dose adjusted or switch medications to alleviate this particular side effect.

Swelling of extremities and face

Edema is a side effect possibly associated with taking alogliptin. If you have sudden pronounced swelling you should proceed to the emergency room immediately because you may be having an allergic reaction. Tell your doctor if you notice swelling on your body after you begin your alogliptin therapy.

Tightness in the chest

If you experience tightness in the chest as a result of taking alogliptin, you should consult your doctor right away. If your symptoms are painful or extreme then you should be assessed by the emergency room in the event of a life-threatening condition such as a heart attack.

Trouble breathing

If you develop an issue breathing with alogliptin you should tell your doctor and have them adjust your medication or switch your medication. If you have a preexisting condition that makes breathing difficult then you should tell your doctor before beginning alogliptin.

Weight gain

In some cases, individuals have reported an unexpected weight gain but this is uncommon. You should tell your healthcare professional and have them monitor your weight regularly. If you continue to gain weight, you may need to have your dose adjusted or switch to medication that does not have this side effect. Always try to follow a healthy diet and get regular exercise in order to help this medication work effectively.

Other possible side effects include:

  • loosening of the skin
  • blistering and peeling
  • bloating
  • dark colored urine
  • diarrhea
  • trouble swallowing
  • discomfort
  • light colored stool
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle aches
  • stomach pain
  • side pain
  • facial swelling
  • red lesions
  • swollen lymph glands
  • tightness in the chest
  • indigestions
  • joint inflammation
  • hives
  • itching
  • rash
  • sore throat
  • ulcers in or around the mouth
  • hives
  • vomiting
  • yellow skin or eyes

Dosage

The normal dose for an adult with type II diabetes is 25 mg of Alogliptin orally once per day. If you are taking sulfonylureas or insulin secretagogues your dosage may be lowered in order to minimize the potential risk of developing hypoglycemia. If you experience mild renal impairment, your doctor may adjust your dose to minimize the effects of the mediation. The dose amounts may vary from 6.25 to 12.5 mg orally depending on the level of renal impairment.

If you skip a dose, you should take your medication as soon as you remember unless it is time for your next dose. Do not double your dose if you have skipped your medication. Alogliptin may be taken with or without food.

Interactions

There are 645 drugs that interact with alogliptin. The two major drug interactions include bexarotene and gatifloxacin. Some of the commonly used drugs that interact with alogliptin include Basaglar, Humalog, and ProAir HFA (albuterol). Alogliptin is also known to interact with alcohol and can affect your blood sugar levels. Women should limit their alcohol consumption to one drink per day and men two drinks per day.

There are also three disease interactions associated with alogliptin. They include liver disease, pancreatitis, and renal dysfunction. This drug can make your condition worse and should be avoided to prevent serious damage or illness. If you take any of these medications, or you have any of these conditions, you should discuss it with your doctor to help obtain a course of treatment that is safe and effective for type II diabetes.

Warnings

Discuss all of your allergies to medication and food with your doctor before taking alogliptin. Tell them all about the symptoms you experienced during your allergic reactions. Do not take alogliptin if you have an acidic blood problem or type I diabetes. Tell your doctor about all of the medications you are currently taking, including vitamins and herbal supplements. Once you begin taking alogliptin, do not stop taking it suddenly without consulting your physician.

Do not operate a vehicle if your blood sugar is low and check your blood sugar levels often. Always inform all of your health care providers that you take alogliptin. Stick to your diet and exercise program to help you maintain optimal blood sugar levels. Consult your doctor before ingesting alcohol while taking alogliptin. If your diet changes suddenly, or you change your level of activity, you should discuss it with your doctor because they may need to adjust your dosage to compensate for this change. Alogliptin has been associated with heart failure and kidney problems. Monitor your health and follow your treatment plan carefully.

Alogliptin has also been known to cause skin break down and blistering, which can be severe in some instances. If you are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, you should discuss this with your doctor. If you are planning on breastfeeding you should also talk to your doctor.

Storage

Alogliptin should be kept in a tightly closed container. It should be stored away from light, heat, and excessive moisture. Do not store alogliptin in your bathroom to prevent exposure to excess moisture. Always store your medications away from the reach of children and away from pets and other individuals. Keep alogliptin in a childproof container and make sure the container stays locked in place. If you need to dispose of alogliptin, the best practice is to take it to a community take-back program. If there is no take-back program in your area, you should read the FDA's Disposal of Medicines website. Do not take expired medications. If your medicine has expired you should dispose of it properly and talk to your doctor about getting a new prescription.

Summary

Alogliptin is a medication which is used in the treatment of type II diabetes and is generally well tolerated in most individuals. It is classified as a DD-4 inhibitor and is taken orally once per day with or without food. Alogliptin is not intended as a cure for type II diabetes but is a medication which helps individuals control their blood sugar level in order to maintain an overall well condition. The recommended dose should be taken daily even if you are feeling well. Ceasing to take the medication suddenly can cause a variety of negative side effects, some of which may even be life-threatening.

If at some point during your treatment you develop an infection or a fever, you should tell your doctor because they may alter the dose of your medication based on your need. Closely monitor your side effects and make sure to keep your doctor informed regarding any changes or sudden life-threatening conditions. If you have any medical conditions or take any medication that is known to interact with alogliptin, you should inform your doctor. There may be other medications which do not pose a threat to your health.

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Last Reviewed:
December 10, 2017
Last Updated:
April 04, 2018