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GENERIC NAME: glimepiride
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM
Glimepiride is an oral blood sugar-lowering drug in a class of medicines for controlling diabetes called sulfonylureas. Glimepiride is related to other sulfonylureas including glyburide (Micronase; Diabeta), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase) and tolazamide (Tolinase).
Glimepiride is used in type II diabetes, the most common type of diabetes that is found in 90% of patients with diabetes. In type II diabetes, insulin usually is not necessary to control the blood sugar. Instead, diet and oral medications often are sufficient. Intolerance to sugar that results in elevated blood sugar is caused by reduced insulin secretion by the pancreas and resistance to insulin's effects by the body's cells. Glimepiride lowers the sugar level in the blood by stimulating insulin to be secreted from the pancreas into the blood. Insulin causes sugar to leave the blood and enter cells throughout the body. Glimepiride was approved by the FDA in December of 1995.
GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes
PREPARATIONS: Tablets: 1mg, 2mg, 4mg.
STORAGE: Tablets should be stored below 86 F (30 C).
Medicines that can increase blood sugar can reverse the action of glimepiride. These drugs include diuretics [for example, hydrochlorothiazide (Hydrodiuril, Ezide, Hydro-Par, Microzide, and many combinations with other drugs), furosemide (Lasix)], corticosteroids such as prednisone and methylprednisolone (Medrol)], phenytoin (Dilantin), niacin, and sympathomimetics such as pseudoephedrine (Sudafed).
Beta-blockers such as propranolol (Inderal) and atenolol (Tenormin) can cause low or high blood sugar. Additionally, they can directly reverse the sugar-lowering effect of sulfonylureas and render them less effective. Beta-blockers also can blunt some of the body's protective responses to low blood sugar, thus making it difficult for patients to recognize reactions due to low blood sugar. This notwithstanding, beta-blockers have been used successfully in patients with diabetes and have been associated with improved survival in patients with diabetes with high blood pressure.
Rifampin increases the breakdown of two other sulfonylureas, tolbutamide (Orinase) and glyburide (Diabeta, Micronase). This might interfere with the effects of the drugs and result in higher levels of sugar in the blood. Although this same interference has not yet been reported with glimepiride, the possibility that it may occur should be kept in mind.
Glimepiride is an anti-diabetic drug (sulfonylurea-type) used along with a proper diet and exercise program to control high blood sugar. It is used in patients with type 2 diabetes (non-insulin-dependent diabetes). It works by stimulating the release of your body's natural insulin. Effectively controlling high blood sugar helps prevent heart disease, strokes, kidney disease, blindness, and circulation problems, as well as sexual function problems (impotence).
HOW TO USE
Take this medication by mouth usually once daily, with breakfast or the first main meal of the day. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time each day. Monitor blood glucose levels on a regular basis, and share the results with your doctor.
Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) can occur during glimepiride therapy. Symptoms of low blood sugar include hunger, nausea, tiredness, perspiration, headache, heart palpitations, numbness around the mouth, tingling in the fingers, tremors, muscle weakness, blurred vision, cold temperature, excessive yawning, irritability, confusion, or loss of consciousness. Other side effects include dizziness (1 of every 60 persons), headache (1 of every 75), and nausea or vomiting (1 of every 90). A rash occurs in fewer than 1 of every 100 persons who receive glimepiride. Glimepiride is a derivative of a sulfonamide drug. People allergic to other sulfonamide-related drugs may develop an allergic reaction to glimepiride.
It is believed that control of blood sugar in people with diabetes decreases the risks of eye, kidney, and nerve damage. Glimepiride is used to treat type II diabetes that cannot be controlled by a strict diabetes diet alone. If sulfonylureas are not effective, other oral drugs or insulin may be used.
Like other medicines used to treat diabetes, the dose of glimepiride is individualized using periodic measurements of blood sugar to determine the best dose.
If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US national poison hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canadian residents should call their local poison control center directly. Symptoms of overdose may include: shakiness, rapid heartbeat, unexplained sweating, loss of consciousness.
Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Note : This product information is intended only for residents of the India. Taj Pharmaceuticals Limited, medicines help to treat and prevent a range of conditions—from the most common to the most challenging—for people around the world.