This combination medication is used along with a proper diet and exercise program to control high blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes. This medication should not be used to treat type 1 diabetes (insulin-dependent diabetes). Controlling high blood sugar helps prevent kidney damage, blindness, nerve problems, loss of limbs, and sexual function problems. Proper control of diabetes may also lessen your risk of a heart attack or stroke.
Pioglitazone belongs to a class of drugs known as thiazolidinediones or "glitazones". Metformin and pioglitazone work by helping to restore your body's proper response to the insulin you naturally produce. Metformin also decreases the amount of sugar that your liver makes and that your stomach/intestines absorb.
Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of using pioglitazone-containing products.
How to Use This Medication
Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start taking pioglitazone/metformin and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once or twice daily with meals to decrease stomach upset. Drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
The dosage is based on your medical condition, kidney function, and response to treatment. Your doctor may direct you to take a low dose of this medication at first, gradually increasing your dose to lower the chance of side effects such as upset stomach. Your doctor will adjust your dose based on your blood sugar levels to find the best dose for you. Follow your doctor's directions carefully. The maximum recommended dose is 45 milligrams of pioglitazone or 2250 milligrams of metformin per day.
Take this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time(s) each day.
If you are already taking another anti-diabetic drug, follow your doctor's directions carefully for stopping/continuing the old drug and starting this medication.
Check your blood sugar regularly as directed by your doctor. Keep track of the results, and share them with your doctor. Tell your doctor if your blood sugar measurements are too high or too low. Your dosage/treatment may need to be changed. It may take up to 2 to 3 months before the full benefit of this drug takes effect.
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