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Drugs reference index «exenatide Subcutaneous»

exenatide Subcutaneous


exenatide (Subcutaneous route)

ex-EN-a-tide

Commonly used brand name(s):

In the U.S.

  • Byetta

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Solution

Therapeutic Class: Antidiabetic

Uses For exenatide

Exenatide injection is used to treat high blood sugar levels that are caused by a type of diabetes mellitus or sugar diabetes called type 2 diabetes. Normally, after you eat, your pancreas releases insulin to help your body store excess sugar for later use. This process occurs during normal digestion of food. In type 2 diabetes, your body does not work properly to store the excess sugar and the sugar remains in your bloodstream. Chronic high blood sugar can lead to serious health problems in the future. Proper diet is the first step in managing type 2 diabetes but often medicines are needed to help your body. Exenatide helps your body cope with high blood sugar in several ways. Exenatide helps the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin when there is too much sugar in your blood. Exenatide helps the cells of your liver to decrease the amount of sugar the liver dumps into your blood. Exenatide slows down the passage of food from your stomach and helps to decrease the amount of sugar added to your blood after eating. Exenatide also reduces the amount of food needed because the sugar in the bloodstream is processed more effectively .

exenatide is available only with your doctor's prescription .

Before Using exenatide

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For exenatide, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to exenatide or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of exenatide in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established .

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatrics-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of exenatide in the elderly .

Pregnancy

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersCAnimal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breast Feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Interactions with Medicines

Using exenatide with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Warfarin

Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of exenatide. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Diabetic ketoacidosis or
  • Type 1 diabetes—These conditions should be treated with insulin .
  • Gastrointestinal disease, severe (e.g., gastroparesis) or
  • Kidney disease, end-stage or severe—May make symptoms such as nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting worse .
  • Liver disease—Use with caution .

Proper Use of exenatide

Dosing

The dose of exenatide will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of exenatide. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For subcutaneous dosage form (injection):
    • For type 2 diabetes:
      • Adults—At first, your dose will be an injection to the thigh, upper arm, or stomach of 5 mcg two times a day at any time within the 60–minute period before the morning and evening meals (or before the two main meals of the day, about six hours or more apart). Your doctor may adjust your dose after the first month of therapy to 10 mcg twice a day .
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor .

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of exenatide, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Store your new, unused medicine pen in the refrigerator, in the original carton, and protect it from light. Do not freeze exenatide, and do not use the medicine if it has been frozen .

After using the medicine pen for the first time, you may store it in a closed container at room temperature. Keep the pen away from heat, and protect it from light .

Remove the needle from the pen before storing the medicine. This prevents leaking of the remaining medicine and prevents air bubbles from forming in the cartridge .

The pen should be thrown away 30 days after the first time it is used, even if there is some medicine left in it .

Throw away used needles in a hard, closed container that the needles cannot poke through. Keep this container away from children and pets .

Precautions While Using exenatide

Your doctor will want to check your progress at regular visits .

It is very important to carefully follow any instructions from your health care team about:

  • Alcohol—Drinking alcohol may cause severe low blood sugar. Discuss this with your health care team .
  • Other medicines—Do not take other medicines during the time you are taking exenatide unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This especially includes nonprescription medicines such as aspirin, and medicines for appetite control, asthma, colds, cough, hay fever, or sinus problems .
  • Counseling—Other family members need to learn how to prevent side effects or help with side effects if they occur. Also, diabetic patients may need special counseling about diabetes medicine dosing changes that might occur because of lifestyle changes, such as changes in exercise and diet. Furthermore, counseling on contraception and pregnancy may be needed because of the problems that can occur in patients with diabetes during pregnancy .
  • Travel—Keep a recent prescription and your medical history with you. Be prepared for an emergency as you would normally. Make allowances for changing time zones and keep your meal times as close as possible to your usual meal times .

In case of emergency—There may be a time when you need emergency help for a problem caused by your diabetes. You need to be prepared for these emergencies. It is a good idea to wear a medical identification (ID) bracelet or neck chain at all times. Also, carry an ID card in your wallet or purse that says that you have diabetes and a list of all of your medicines .

exenatide does not cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). However, low blood sugar can occur when exenatide is taken with other medicines, such as insulin or sulfonylureas, that can lower blood sugar. Low blood sugar can also occur if you delay or miss a meal or snack, exercise more than usual, drink alcohol, or cannot eat because of nausea or vomiting .

Symptoms of low blood sugar include anxiety; behavior change similar to being drunk; blurred vision; cold sweats; confusion; cool, pale skin; difficulty in thinking; drowsiness; excessive hunger; fast heartbeat; headache (continuing); nausea; nervousness; nightmares; restless sleep; shakiness; slurred speech; or unusual tiredness or weakness .

If symptoms of low blood sugar occur, eat glucose tablets or gel, corn syrup, honey, or sugar cubes; or drink fruit juice, non-diet soft drink, or sugar dissolved in water to relieve the symptoms. Also, check your blood for low blood sugar. Glucagon is used in emergency situations when severe symptoms such as seizures (convulsions) or unconsciousness occur. Have a glucagon kit available, along with a syringe and needle, and know how to use it. Members of your family should also know how to use it .

Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) may occur if you do not take enough or skip a dose of your antidiabetic medicine, overeat or do not follow your meal plan, have a fever or infection, or do not exercise as much as usual .

Symptoms of high blood sugar include blurred vision; drowsiness; dry mouth; flushed, dry skin; fruit-like breath odor; increased urination (frequency and amount); ketones in urine; loss of appetite; stomach ache, nausea, or vomiting; tiredness; troubled breathing (rapid and deep); unconsciousness; or unusual thirst .

If symptoms of high blood sugar occur, check your blood sugar level and then call your doctor for instructions.

exenatide may cause pancreatitis (swelling of the pancreas). Check with your doctor right away if you have severe stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting while you are using exenatide .

exenatide Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

Incidence not known
  • Agitation
  • bloated, full feeling
  • chills
  • coma
  • confusion
  • constipation
  • cough
  • darkened urine
  • decreased urination or urine output
  • depression
  • difficulty swallowing
  • dizziness
  • dry mouth
  • fainting
  • fast heartbeat
  • fever
  • headache
  • hives or welts
  • hostility
  • increase in heart rate
  • indigestion
  • irritability
  • itching skin
  • large, hive-like swelling on face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • lethargy
  • lightheadedness
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle twitching
  • nausea
  • pains in stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • rapid breathing
  • rapid weight gain
  • seizures
  • shortness of breath
  • skin rash
  • stupor
  • sunken eyes
  • swelling of face, ankles, or hands
  • thirst
  • tightness in chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vomiting
  • wheezing
  • wrinkled skin
  • yellow eyes or skin

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:

Symptoms of overdose
  • Anxiety
  • blurred vision
  • cold sweats
  • cool, pale skin
  • increased hunger
  • nervousness
  • nightmares
  • severe vomiting
  • shakiness
  • slurred speech

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
  • Acid or sour stomach
  • belching
  • diarrhea
  • feeling jittery
  • heartburn
  • stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
Less common
  • Appetite decreased
  • increased sweating
  • lack or loss of strength
Incidence not known
  • Bleeding, blistering, burning, coldness, discoloration of skin, feeling of pressure, hives, infection, inflammation, itching, lumps, numbness, pain, rash, redness, scarring, soreness, stinging, swelling, tenderness, tingling, ulceration, or warmth at injection site
  • change in taste
  • excess air or gas in stomach or intestines
  • loss of taste
  • passing gas
  • pressure in the stomach
  • rash with flat lesions or small raised lesions on the skin
  • redness of skin
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • swelling of abdomen or stomach area

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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