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Actos belongs to a class of antidiabetic drugs called thiazolidinediones that are prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes. In order for Actos to work effectively, your pancreas must be able to produce some insulin which is why type 1 diabetics are unable to benefit from this drug.
Your doctor may recommend taking Actos along with other antidiabetic drugs. Actos is not a cure for diabetes, but it can help you avoid the health hazards that may occur from having high levels of glucose in your blood, such as stroke, heart attack, or kidney disease.
Type 2 diabetics do not make enough insulin or their body is not able to utilize the insulin that is available. This results in insufficient removal of glucose from their blood so glucose levels rise. Actos or generic Pioglitazone works by attaching to insulin receptors on cells throughout the body, causing them to become more responsive to insulin so excess glucose is taken away. The generic alternative is not manufactured by the company that makes the brand product.
Type 2 diabetes is a progressive and chronic condition that can be treated successfully with diet, exercise, no smoking, and medication. As your pancreas looses the ability to produce the amount of insulin required, or your body does not properly use the insulin that is available, glucose builds up in your bloodstream instead of being stored in your cells for energy.
Obesity is the most significant risk factor for developing diabetes in children and adults. A lack of exercise and poor eating habits are common among the younger generation so it’s important to try and keep them active and teach them proper eating habits to avoid becoming diabetic.
Actos is not for treatment of type 1 diabetes. You should not take Actos if you have severe or uncontrolled heart failure, low blood sugar, or bladder cancer. Advise your doctor if you have symptoms of liver problems, as it may not be safe for you to take Actos. Actos is an oral medication that can be taken with or without food. You should avoid drinking alcohol while taking Actos, as it lowers blood sugar levels. Risks cannot be ruled out if you take Actos while you are pregnant, if you are trying to conceive, or when breast feeding.
Discuss any other health conditions you have so your doctor can determine if Actos is the right drug for your situation. Provide a list of any current Rx medications you are taking and include OTC drugs, herbal preparations, and vitamin or dietary supplements. There may be an interaction between Actos and any of the following medications: birth control pills; anti-diabetes medications; corticosteroids; diuretics; Gemfibrozil; Ketoconazole; Nifedipine; Rifampicin. Combining Actos with other meds may change the efficacy or cause unintended side effects.
You should contact your doctor right away if you experience any of these more serious side effects: shortness of breath; changes in vision; sudden unusual pain in the arm, hand or foot.