Saxagliptin

Lowers blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. It works in part by increasing the insulin made by the body. Taken once daily.

Saxagliptin Overview

Reviewed: June 14, 2012
Updated: 

Saxagliptin is a prescription medication used to treat type 2 diabetes. Saxagliptin belongs to a group of drugs called dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors. It works by increasing the amount of insulin made by the body after meals, and by decreasing the amount of glucose produced by the liver.

This medication comes in tablet form. It is usually taken once daily, with or without food. Do not split or cut saxagliptin tablets. Swallow the tablets whole.

Common side effects of saxagliptin includes upper respiratory tract infection, urinary tract infection, and headache.

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Saxagliptin Cautionary Labels

precautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautions

Uses of Saxagliptin

Saxagliptin is a prescription medication used with diet and exercise to control high blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Saxagliptin Brand Names

Saxagliptin may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Saxagliptin Drug Class

Saxagliptin is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Saxagliptin

Saxagliptin can cause serious side effects, including:

  • See "Drug Precautions".
  • Allergic (hypersensitivity) reactions, such as:
    • swelling of your face, lips, throat, and other areas on your skin
    • difficulty with swallowing or breathing
    • raised, red areas on your skin (hives)
    • skin rash, itching, flaking, or peeling
 
If you have these symptoms, stop taking saxagliptin and contact your healthcare provider right away.

Common side effects of saxagliptin include:

  • upper respiratory tract infection
  • urinary tract infection
  • headache

Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) may become worse in people who also take another medication to treat diabetes, such as sulfonylureas or insulin. Tell your healthcare provider if you take other diabetes medicines. If you have symptoms of low blood sugar, you should check your blood sugar and treat if low, then call your healthcare provider. Symptoms of low blood sugar include:

  • shaking
  • sweating
  • rapid heartbeat
  • change in vision
  • hunger
  • headache
  • change in mood

Swelling or fluid retention in your hands, feet, or ankles (peripheral edema) may become worse in people who also take a thiazolidinedione to treat diabetes. If you do not know whether you are already on this type of medication, ask your healthcare provider.

These are not all of the possible side effects of saxagliptin. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that bother you or that do not go away. For more information, ask your healthcare provider.

 

Saxagliptin Interactions

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of your medicines and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you get a new medicine.

Saxagliptin may affect the way other medicines work, and other medicines may affect how saxagliptin works. Contact your healthcare provider if you will be starting or stopping certain other types of medications, such as antibiotics, or medicines that treat fungus or HIV/AIDS, because your dose of saxagliptin might need to be changed.

 

Saxagliptin Precautions

Serious side effects can happen to people taking saxagliptin, including inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) which may be severe and lead to death.

Certain medical problems make you more likely to get pancreatitis.

Before you start taking saxagliptin:

Tell your healthcare provider if you have ever had:

  • inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • stones in your gallbladder (gallstones)
  • a history of alcoholism
  • high blood triglyceride levels
  • a history of a serious hypersensitivity reaction to saxagliptin, such as anaphylaxis, angioedema, or exfoliative skin conditions.

It is not known if having these medical problems will make you more likely to get pancreatitis with saxagliptin.

Stop taking saxagliptin and contact your healthcare provider right away if you have pain in your stomach area (abdomen) that is severe and will not go away. The pain may be felt going from your abdomen through to your back. The pain may happen with or without vomiting. These may be symptoms of pancreatitis.

Saxagliptin may cause severe and persistent joint pain. If you experience severe and persistent joint pain, contact your doctor right away. Do not stop taking your medication. Your doctor will decide if your medication is the possible cause of severe  joint pain and will discontinue the drug if appropriate.

Do not take saxagliptin if you:

  • have a history of a serious hypersensitivity reaction to saxagliptin, such as anaphylaxis, angioedema, or exfoliative skin conditions.
Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction to saxagliptin may include:
  • swelling of your face, lips, throat, and other areas on your skin
  • difficulty with swallowing or breathing
  • raised, red areas on your skin (hives)
  • skin rash, itching, flaking, or peeling

If you have these symptoms, stop taking saxagliptin and contact your healthcare provider right away.

 

Saxagliptin Food Interactions

Follow dietary (food) recommendations made by your doctor and dietitian which should include a healthy diet. 

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with saxagliptin and lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

Inform MD

Before you take saxagliptin, tell your healthcare provider if you:

  • have kidney problems.
  • a history of a serious hypersensitivity reaction to saxagliptin, such as anaphylaxis, angioedema, or exfoliative skin conditions.
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
  • are breast-feeding or plan to breastfeed. 

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

 

Saxagliptin and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

This medication falls into category B. In animal studies, pregnant animals were given this medication and had some babies born with problems. No well-controlled studies have been done in humans. Therefore, this medication may be used if the potential benefits to the mother outweigh the potential risks to the unborn child.

Saxagliptin and Lactation

Tell your healthcare provider if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Saxagliptin may be passed in your milk to your baby. Talk with your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby while you take saxagliptin.

Saxagliptin Usage

  • Take saxagliptin by mouth one time each day exactly as directed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose without talking to your healthcare provider.
  • Saxagliptin can be taken with or without food.
  • Do not split or cut saxagliptin tablets.
  • During periods of stress on the body, such as:
    • fever
    • trauma
    • infection
    • surgery
Contact your healthcare provider right away as your medication needs may change.
  • Your healthcare provider should test your blood to measure how well your kidneys are working before and during your treatment with saxagliptin. You may need a lower dose of saxagliptin if your kidneys are not working well.
  • Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions for treating blood sugar that is too low (hypoglycemia). Talk to your healthcare provider if low blood sugar is a problem for you.
  • If you miss a dose of saxagliptin, take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose. Just take the next dose at your regular time. Do not take two doses at the same time unless your healthcare provider tells you to do so. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have questions about a missed dose.
  • If you take too much saxagliptin, call your healthcare provider or Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222, or go to the nearest hospital emergency room right away.

Saxagliptin Dosage

Take saxagliptin exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The recommended dose of saxagliptin is 2.5 mg or 5 mg once daily taken with or without food.

Saxagliptin Overdose

If you take too much this medication, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

Other Requirements

  • Store saxagliptin at room temperature between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C).
  • Keep saxagliptin and all medicines out of the reach of children.