What Is Avandamet (Metformin and Rosiglitazone)?
Avandamet is a combination medicine that contains the drugs metformin and rosiglitazone.
This prescription medication is used along with diet and exercise to treat type 2 diabetes (a disease in which the body doesn't make or use the hormone insulin normally, so it can't control the amount of sugar in the blood).
Metformin belongs to a class of drugs called biguanides. It helps control the amount of sugar in your blood.
Rosiglitazone belongs to a group of medicines called thiazolidinediones. It helps your body use insulin better.
Taking Avandamet, along with adopting a healthy lifestyle, can reduce your risk of developing serious or life-threatening diabetes complications, which may include heart disease, stroke, peripheral artery disease, nerve damage, kidney problems, or eye problems.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Avandamet medicine in 2002. It's marketed by GlaxoSmithKline.
Avandamet contains a black box warning because it may cause or worsen heart failure in some people.
You shouldn't use this medicine if you have severe or uncontrolled heart failure.
Call your doctor immediately if you experience any symptoms of congestive heart failure, which may include:
- Shortness of breath
- Swelling of the arms, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- Rapid weight gain
- Fast or racing heartbeat
- Increased fatigue
- Frequent dry cough or wheezing
- Waking up feeling short of breath during the night
- Difficulty walking or exercising
Avandamet contains another black box warning because it may cause lactic acidosis (a serious condition in which lactate builds up in the body).
You could be more likely to develop lactic acidosis if you:
Get emergency medical help if you experience the following symptoms:
- Muscle pain or weakness
- Trouble breathing
- Numbness or a cold feeling in your arms and legs
- Stomach pain
- Nausea with vomiting
- Fast or uneven heart rate
- Severe weakness or tiredness
Don't take insulin while using Avandamet. Doing so may raise your risk of developing serious heart problems.
Avandamet shouldn't be used by people with type 1 diabetes (a disease in which the body doesn't produce any insulin) or diabetic ketoacidosis (a dangerous condition that can occur if high blood sugar is untreated).
Before taking this medicine, tell your doctor if you have, or have ever had:
- Heart failure, or any other type of heart problem
- A stroke
- Kidney or liver disease
- Eye problems caused by diabetes
- Vitamin B12 deficiency
- Anemia (low red blood cell count)
- A recent infection
- Adrenal or pituitary gland problems
- Bouts of dehydration
- Osteoporosis or another bone condition
- Metabolic acidosis (too much acid in the blood)
Women who take Avandamet may be more likely to experience bone fractures in the upper arm, hand, or foot. Talk to your doctor about this risk.
Tell all health professionals who treat you that you're taking Avandamet. You may need to stop using this medicine if you're undergoing certain procedures or medical tests.
Avandamet helps control type 2 diabetes, but it doesn't cure it.
Continue to take this medicine even if you feel well. Don't stop using Avandamet without first talking to your doctor.
This medicine may cause changes in your blood sugar. You should know the symptoms of a high or low blood sugar episode, and what to do if you experience either one.
Illness, injury, or unusual stress can affect your blood sugar levels. They may also affect how much Avandamet you need to take. Talk to your doctor if you experience any of these conditions while taking this medicine.
Your doctor will probably want to check your blood sugar and urine sugar levels often while you're using this medication. Keep all appointments with your healthcare provider and laboratory.
Always wear a diabetic ID bracelet to be sure you get proper treatment in case of an emergency.
Avandamet should be used along with a program that includes diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your doctor's recommendations carefully.
Pregnancy and Avandamet
It's not known whether Avandamet could harm an unborn baby if taken during pregnancy.
Tell your doctor if you're pregnant, or plan to become pregnant, before using this medicine.
Some women who take Avandamet start having menstrual periods, even if they haven't had a period for a long time because of a medical condition.
You may be able to get pregnant if your period restarts. Talk to your doctor if this is a concern.
It's not known whether this drug passes into breast milk or could hurt a breastfeeding baby. Don't breastfeed while using Avandamet.
Avandamet Side Effects
Common Side Effects of Avandamet
Tell your doctor if any of the following side effects become severe or don't go away:
- Mild headache
- Cold symptoms, such as a stuffy nose, sore throat, or sneezing
- Mild upset stomach or diarrhea
Serious Side Effects of Avandamet
Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the symptoms listed in the Avandamet Warnings section above, or any of the following serious side effects:
- Chest pain or heavy feeling
- Pain spreading to the jaw or shoulder
- Sudden, severe headache
- Slurred speech
- Vision problems or changes
- Problems with balance
- Pale skin
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Upper stomach pain
- Dark-colored urine
- Clay-colored stools
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
- Signs of a severe allergic reaction (may include hives, difficulty breathing, or swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat)
Tell your doctor about all prescription, nonprescription, illegal, recreational, herbal, nutritional, or dietary drugs you're taking, especially those listed in the Avandamet Warnings section above, and any of the following:
Avandamet and Other Interactions
You may experience dizziness or drowsiness while taking Avandamet.
Don't drive, operate machinery, or perform other activities that require alertness until you know how this medicine affects you.
Avandamet and Alcohol
Alcohol can affect your blood sugar levels and may worsen certain side effects of Avandamet.
Talk to your doctor before drinking alcoholic beverages while taking this medicine.
Avandamet comes as a tablet to take by mouth, usually once or twice daily.
Your dose will depend on your medical condition and response to treatment.
Follow the instructions on your prescription label carefully. Don't take more or less of this medicine than is recommended.
You can take Avandamet with food if it upsets your stomach.
If you suspect an overdose of Avandamet, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.
You can get in touch with a poison control center at 800-222-1222.
Missed Dose of Avandamet
If you miss a dose of Avandamet, take it as soon as you remember.
But if it's almost time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular medication schedule.
Don't double up on doses to make up for a missed one.
Q: I took Avandamet (rosiglitazone/metformin) 2 tablets per day, but I think it may not work, so what should I do?
A: Not knowing how long you have been taking this medication it is hard to say why it may not be giving you the results you are looking for. You should be monitoring your blood sugar levels at least 3 times a day and keep a record of this, plus the foods and calorie intake on a daily basis. Proper diet and exercise is the key. You should inform your health care provider about your concerns and give them the information that you have been keeping. For more information you can go to //www.everydayhealth.com/type-2-diabetes/guide/
Q: Can Avandamet cause weight gain?
A: Avandamet (rosiglitazone and metformin) is a combination medication that contains a biguanide antidiabetic agent and a thiazolidinedione antidiabetic agent. Avandamet is approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes when used along with diet and exercise to improve control of blood sugar levels. According to the prescribing information for Avandamet, weight gain has been seen in some patients taking rosiglitazone, one of the medications that is in Avandamet. The weight gain is dose related and it is unknown why patients gain weight. However, the theory is that it involves fluid retention and fat accumulation. During the postmarketing experience, there have been reports of patients having rapid and unusual increases in weight. If you have experienced rapid increases in weight, it is recommended to consult with your physician immediately. Weight gain is not the only possible side effect associated with Avandamet. If you feel that you are experiencing a possible side effect of your medication, talk with your physician. Your physician can provide guidance about the side effect and the appropriate treatment. Weight gain can be caused by many factors. For more specific information, consult with your doctor or pharmacist for guidance based on your health status and current medications, particularly before taking any action.
Video: Avandamet Helps Improve Blood Sugar Control - Overview
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