Glumetza® is a diabetes medication used in the treatment of type 2 diabetes. It contains the medication metformin, which helps lower the amount of glucose in the blood and the amount of glucose produced by the liver. In addition, Glumetza® aids in the body’s response to insulin. Glumetza® is manufactured to release metformin slowly and steadily over a few hours.
This medication comes in a tablet form that is generally prescribed to be taken once a day, in the evening. The tablet should be taken with a meal and swallowed in one piece, never chewed or split. In addition to taking Glumetza®, most patients who are prescribed this drug might be asked to follow a diet and exercise routine.
By slowly being released, this medication causes fewer stomach problems during the first week of use than fast-releasing metformin medications. After taking this tablet, it will expand to 150 percent of its size within the stomach. Two hours after the dose is taken, the tablet will remain in the stomach and slowly release the medication. At eight to nine hours after the dose, more of the drug will enter the bloodstream while unabsorbed amounts of the drug remain in the lower gastrointestinal tract. Fifteen hours after the dose, the final amounts are broken down and released.
Common side effects of Glumetza® might include diarrhea, gas, indigestion, nausea, vomiting and stomach discomfort. If these symptoms become severe or persist for a long time, patients should contact their doctors. Other side effects might include hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia. If untreated, these two side effects could become severe.
In rare cases, Glumetza® might cause the life-threatening condition lactic acidosis. Symptoms include severe muscle cramps, shallow breathing, unusual sleepiness or weakness and diarrhea. If patients show symptoms of lactic acidosis, they should seek medical attention immediately. Drinking alcohol while on Glumetza® might increase the risk for lactic acidosis.
Before beginning the use of this medication, patients should tell their doctors of other medications and medical conditions as well as whether they are breastfeeding, pregnant or plan to become pregnant. This medication is not recommended for patients who have diabetic ketoacidosis, have kidney problems or have experienced an allergic reaction to metformin. Keep this medication securely stored away from excess light and moisture, out of the reach of children.
While taking this medication, patients might be asked to measure their blood or urine sugar levels at home to track their reaction to the drug. Appointments with doctors should be kept to help monitor one's blood sugar levels. Doctors might order additional tests to see the patient’s reaction to this medication.