Glyburide for diabetes is effective as a treatment. It is used either alone, or in combination with other medication to treat Type 2 diabetes which does not respond to dietary changes alone. Glyburide belongs to the class of drugs called sulphonylureas, which includes glibenclamide and gliclazide, and is usually available by prescription only. It is known by different trade names in different countries, according to the manufacturer.
Type 2 diabetes is a disease in which the glucose levels in the blood are too high. This happens due to the fact that either there is insufficient insulin due to low production by the pancreas, or the cells of the body are resistant to the insulin produced (insulin resistance). Insulin is a chemical which is responsible for controlling the sensitive balance of glucose in the body. If left untreated, diabetes can have serious and severe long-term effects.
Obesity is one of the main risk factors for Type 2 diabetes and lifestyle changes and weight loss are the first steps in treatment. These lifestyle changes and loss of weight may not be sufficient to control blood sugar and therefore drugs may need to given in addition to the non-drug measures. Glyburide for diabetes is one of the drugs which may be used. It may be used alone, or in combination with another class of diabetic drug, such as a biguanide like metformin.
The mechanism of action of glyburide for diabetes is stimulation of the release of insulin from the pancreas. This means that glyburide for diabetes will work only in patients who still have some pancreatic responsiveness. The prescribing doctor will monitor response and, if necessary, change dose, add another drug or change the class of drug.
The side effects of glyburide for diabetes may include hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, headache, dizziness and gastrointestinal side effects. Should any adverse effects occur, they should be discussed with the prescribing doctor. As with any medication, glyburide may interact with other medications so these, including over-the-counter, homeopathic and complementary medications, should be disclosed to the prescribing doctor before starting treatment. Pregnancy, desired pregnancy and lactation should also be discussed.
The glyburide dosage will be determined by the doctor and is usually started at a low dose and titrated up slowly with close monitoring of the patient's blood glucose levels. Glyburide dosage will be adjusted according to tolerance and response and the prescribed dose should never be exceeded due to the risk of hypoglycemia. It may be given as a single daily dose or divided doses.