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Drugs reference index «Acarbose»



Generic Name: Acarbose (AY-kar-bose)Brand Name: Precose

Acarbose is used for:

Treating type 2 diabetes. It is used along with diet and exercise. It may be used alone or with other antidiabetic medicines.

Acarbose is a glucosidase inhibitor. It works by slowing down the enzyme that turns carbohydrates into glucose. This decreases blood sugar levels following a meal.

Do NOT use Acarbose if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Acarbose
  • you have blockage of the stomach or intestine, or you are at risk for these problems
  • you have long-term (chronic) bowel inflammation, colon ulcers, or stomach or intestine problems that interfere with digestion or nutrient absorption
  • you have cirrhosis of the liver or unexplained abnormal liver function tests
  • you have diabetic ketoacidosis (high ketone levels) or severe kidney problems

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Acarbose :

Some medical conditions may interact with Acarbose . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have stomach or intestinal problems, liver problems, or kidney problems

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Acarbose . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin) because the risk of their side effects, including bleeding, may be increased by Acarbose
  • Calcium channel blockers (eg, verapamil), corticosteroids (eg, prednisone), diuretics (eg, hydrochlorothiazide), estrogen, isoniazid, nicotinic acid, oral contraceptives (birth control pills), phenothiazines (eg, chlorpromazine), phenytoin, sympathomimetics (eg, pseudoephedrine), or thyroid hormone because they may increase or decrease Acarbose 's effectiveness
  • Insulin or sulfonylureas (eg, glyburide) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Acarbose
  • Digoxin because its effectiveness may be decreased by Acarbose

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Acarbose may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Acarbose :

Use Acarbose as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take Acarbose by mouth with food.
  • If you also take charcoal or digestive enzyme preparations, do not take them within 2 to 4 hours before or after taking Acarbose . Check with your doctor if you have questions.
  • Temporary insulin therapy may be necessary during stressful periods (such as fever, infection, surgery, or trauma).
  • If you miss a dose of Acarbose , skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Acarbose .

Important safety information:

  • Proper diet and exercise are important in order to lose weight and keep it off. Follow the diet and exercise program given to you by your health care provider.
  • Diabetes patients - Carry an ID card at all times that says you have diabetes. Check your blood sugar levels as directed by your doctor. If they are often higher than they should be and you take Acarbose exactly as prescribed, tell your doctor.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take Acarbose before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Carefully follow the regular testing of urine or blood glucose schedules given to you by your health care provider.
  • Acarbose , used with other diabetes medicines, may cause a loss of blood sugar control. Your health care provider may need to change the amount of medicine that you are taking. Because Acarbose prevents the breakdown of table (cane) sugar, be sure to use glucose (dextrose), not sugar or fruits, to treat symptoms of low blood sugar (tiredness, excessive hunger and sweating, numbness in arms or legs). Contact your health care provider if these symptoms occur.
  • Lab tests, including complete blood cell counts, blood glucose, glycosylated hemoglobin levels, and liver function tests, may be performed while you use Acarbose . These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Acarbose should not be used in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Acarbose while you are pregnant. It is not known if Acarbose is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Acarbose .

Possible side effects of Acarbose :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Bloating; diarrhea; gas; nausea; stomach pain; vomiting.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); severe stomach pain; yellowing of skin or eyes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include diarrhea; gas; stomach pain or discomfort.

Proper storage of Acarbose :

Store Acarbose below 77 degrees F (25 degrees C) in a tightly sealed container. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Acarbose out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Acarbose , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Acarbose is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is summary only. It does not contain all information about Acarbose . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

  • Acarbose Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Acarbose Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Acarbose Detailed Consumer Information (PDR)
  • acarbose Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • acarbose Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
  • Precose Prescribing Information (FDA)

See Also...

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