If you have type 2 diabetes that is not properly controlled by the medications you are currently taking or if you are unable to take Pioglitazone, talk to your doctor about Avandia. This is not an Insulin drug; Avandia works with the Insulin your body produces, which is why Avandia is not recommended for type 1 diabetics.
When Avandia is combined with exercise and a healthy diet to regulate your blood sugar levels, your risk of kidney damage, amputation, vision loss, and nerve problems are greatly reduced. Your doctor may determine that Avandia can be taken alone or with another diabetes drug such as Metformin or a sulfonylurea, but not with both of these.
The active ingredient in Avandia is Rosiglitazone, an anti-diabetic drug known as a thiazolidinedione. Type 2 diabetics still produce some Insulin which is needed to stimulate cells in your body so glucose can be removed from your blood. Avandia works by attaching to Insulin receptors throughout your body, causing them to be more responsive to Insulin in order to lower blood sugar levels as more glucose can be removed.
Insulin is an essential hormone that carries the sugar in your bloodstream into your cells to be used later to provide energy. Without Insulin, or enough Insulin, the sugar stays in your bloodstream and your body will start to use muscle and fat as a source of energy because there is nothing stored. As the muscle and fat are metabolized, the by-product is ketones, which are dangerous if allowed to build up in your body.
Over time, uncontrolled blood sugar levels can also damage the blood vessels in your kidneys so your blood is not filtered as it should be and a protein called albumin will not be processed into your bloodstream but spills into your urine instead. If left unresolved, you will eventually be required to undergo dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Ask your doctor if Avandia is safe to take if you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or are breast feeding. You and your doctor should review other medical conditions and allergies you have and list all OTC and Rx meds you currently take or use, including herbal remedies and vitamin or dietary supplements. This will help your doctor determine if Avandia is the right drug for your situation.
Keep all medications out of children’s reach and do not share this, or other meds, with anyone else. Continue to monitor your blood sugar so you and your doctor will know if there is a positive response to Avandia, which may take 8 to 12 weeks before the full benefits of this drug are apparent.