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Amylinomimetics for Diabetes

Examples

Generic Name Brand Name
pramlintide Symlin

Amylinomimetics may be used for type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Pramlintide is given as an injection before a meal. Pramlintide is always used with insulin, but the injections are given separately.

How It Works

Amylinomimetics work with insulin to control blood sugars after meals. This medicine slows down food moving through your stomach and slows down sugars moving into your blood. Pramlintide also lowers your appetite and can help you maintain a healthy weight.

Amylinomimetics are synthetic drugs that act like a naturally occurring hormone called amylin. People with type 1 diabetes do not make amylin. People with type 2 diabetes who need insulin do not make enough amylin.

This medicine is given at mealtimes. It may reduce the amount of insulin you need, especially before eating.

Why It Is Used

Amylinomimetics may be used by adults for whom all of the following are true:

  • Have type 1 or type 2 diabetes
  • Use insulin
  • Need better blood sugar control

Amylinomimetics do not replace insulin. This medicine works with insulin to help you control your blood sugar after eating.

How Well It Works

Amylinomimetics used with insulin can improve blood sugar control for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Some people feel more full after eating, so they eat less and lose weight.

Side Effects

All medicines have side effects. But many people don't feel the side effects, or they are able to deal with them. Ask your pharmacist about the side effects of each medicine you take. Side effects are also listed in the information that comes with your medicine.

Here are some important things to think about:

  • Usually the benefits of the medicine are more important than any minor side effects.
  • Side effects may go away after you take the medicine for a while.
  • If side effects still bother you and you wonder if you should keep taking the medicine, call your doctor. He or she may be able to lower your dose or change your medicine. Do not suddenly quit taking your medicine unless your doctor tells you to.

Call 911 or other emergency services right away if you have:

  • Trouble breathing.
  • Swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor if you have:

  • Hives.
  • Low blood sugar after eating a meal.

Common side effects of this medicine include:

  • Nausea in the first few weeks of taking this medicine.
  • Less appetite.
  • Vomiting.
  • Stomach pain.
  • Tiredness.
  • Dizziness.
  • Upset stomach or indigestion.

See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference is not available in all systems.)

What To Think About

Do not use amylinomimetics if you:

Amylinomimetics also slow down how fast your body absorbs oral medicines. Talk with your doctor about all other medicines you take. If you are taking oral medicines that need to be rapidly absorbed, you may take them either 1 hour before or 2 hours after an injection of an amylinomimetic.

Taking medicine

Medicine is one of the many tools your doctor has to treat a health problem. Taking medicine as your doctor suggests will improve your health and may prevent future problems. If you don't take your medicines properly, you may be putting your health (and perhaps your life) at risk.

There are many reasons why people have trouble taking their medicine. But in most cases, there is something you can do. For suggestions on how to work around common problems, see the topic Taking Medicines as Prescribed.

Advice for women

If you are pregnant, breast-feeding, or planning to get pregnant, do not use any medicines unless your doctor tells you to. Some medicines can harm your baby. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, herbs, and supplements. And make sure that all your doctors know that you are pregnant, breast-feeding, or planning to get pregnant.

Checkups

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

Complete the new medication information form (PDF)new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer David C.W. Lau, MD, PhD, FRCPC - Endocrinology
Last Revised July 11, 2013

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

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