Amaryl 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).
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.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Amaryl is an oral blood sugar-lowering drug in a class of medicines for controlling diabetes called sulfonylureas. Amaryl is related to other sulfonylureas including glyburide (Micronase; Diabeta), glipizide (Glucotrol), tolbutamide (Orinase) and tolazamide (Tolinase). Amaryl 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. Amaryl 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.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
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.
Possible Side Effects
Nausea or upset stomach may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these highly unlikely but very serious side effects occur: yellowing eyes or skin, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, unusual tiredness or weakness, easy bleeding or bruising, signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat), mental/mood changes, unusual or sudden weight gain, seizures. This medication can cause low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). This effect may occur if you do not consume enough calories (from food, juices, fruit, etc.). The symptoms include chills, cold sweat, blurred vision, dizziness, drowsiness, shaking, rapid heart rate, weakness, headache, fainting, tingling of the hands or feet, or hunger. It is a good habit to carry glucose tablets or gel to treat low blood sugar. If you are in a situation where you don't have these reliable forms of glucose, eat a quick source of sugar such as table sugar, honey, or candy, or drink a glass of orange juice or non-diet soda to quickly raise your blood sugar level. Tell your doctor immediately about the reaction. To help prevent hypoglycemia, eat meals on a regular schedule and do not skip meals. Symptoms of high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) include thirst, increased urination, confusion, drowsiness, flushing, rapid breathing, or fruity breath odor. If these symptoms occur, tell your doctor immediately. Your medication dosage may need to be increased. A serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include: rash, itching, swelling, dizziness, trouble breathing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Do not share this medication with others. It is recommended you attend a diabetes education program to understand diabetes and all the important aspects of its treatment including meals/diet, exercise, personal hygiene, medications and getting regular eye, foot and medical exams. Consult your doctor or pharmacist. Keep all medical appointments. Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., liver and kidney function tests, fasting blood glucose, hemoglobin A1c, complete blood counts) will be performed to monitor for side effects and response to therapy. Regularly check your blood or urine for sugar, as directed by your doctor or pharmacist.