Where In The World Is Your Medication Made, and How Did It Come To Be?

Where Are Pharmaceuticals Made, and How Are They Produced?

In 2016, American doctors dispensed 2.9 billion drugs to patients. Have you ever stopped to consider, just where are pharmaceuticals made? I know that I’ve never considered this when taking a tablet.

Who makes medicine? How are drugs made? What is the origin of medicine?

When you buy medications, these questions might have occurred to you at one time or another. Yet who can you ask? 

We’ve pulled together every question you’ve ever wanted to ask about medicine but were too afraid to ask. Ready to get the answers to those curious questions? Then read on!

The Origin of Medicine

Humans have been using medicines since prehistoric times. While we may be more likely to think of traumatic procedures such as trepanning, our Stone Age ancestors were familiar with certain other medical procedures too. The birch bracket mushroom, for instance, was used as a laxative.

If we jump forward to the ancient Sumerians and Egyptians, we find more developments in the history of pharmacy. The Sumerians recognized the painkilling qualities of salicylate, a precursor to aspirin, making medicines from willow and other plants rich in the drug. In Ancient Egypt, early doctors recorded treatments on the Ebers Papyrus, with at least one treatment still being used today.

Pharmacy came into its own in the 19th Century. Industrialization had led to huge advances in chemistry. Now we could extract organic compounds and even synthesize new ones!

As the years passed, our empiricism improved and we developed new drugs. Contraceptives, blood pressure tablets, antidepressants, and more. 

But who makes medicine today?

Who Makes Medicine?

Today, the pharmaceutical industry is worth billions of dollars. You’ve probably heard of some of the companies who make medicine, like Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Eli Lilly, and Roche. 

Inside these companies, you’ll find a huge team of people who create the medicine that you take. These are just some of the positions who help make your drugs:

  1. Organic chemists, who isolate medicinal compounds.
  2. Pharmacologists, who discover how the drugs work.
  3. Experts in pharmaceutics, who take the compound isolated by the chemists and make it into the finished product.

Discovering new drugs is a time-consuming task. According to the University of Melbourne, just one in 10,000 compounds will ever hit the market. 

The process doesn’t end there! Many of you will refill your prescriptions, buying common, mass-produced, mass-market medications. Yet if you have a unique problem or set of problems, further intervention may be needed.

This is where pharmaceutical compounding comes in. This is often done at hospital pharmacies, in particular. 

Say that you’re allergic to a non-essential ingredient, you need a liquid medication made, or just need a specific set of active ingredients. A compounding pharmacist will take these active ingredients and make a medication just for you. 

Before drugs were mass-produced, this was an essential skill for a pharmacist. Who else makes medicine when there are no huge factories making pills? Today, many compounding duties are outsourced to larger, regional compounding pharmacies.

This leads us neatly on to our next question: where are pharmaceuticals made?

Where Are Pharmaceuticals Made?

If you’ve looked at your medicines’ boxes, you might have noticed it doesn’t say where it was made. There’s solid reasoning behind that.

A lot of medicines have their active ingredients made in developing countries. For example, India or China. Other medicines may source their ingredients from European countries or have their ingredients isolated in the United States and Canada.

The pharmaceutical industry is a giant one. It spans the globe and buys ingredients from almost everywhere. The thing is that they don’t really want you to know about this: why not?

There is something of a psychological element to this. When people discover that their drugs are being made by Indian and Chinese companies, some patients reject them. They may feel that their quality control isn’t up to the standard of American companies.

This is a poor perception. If the active ingredient is the same and it is overseen by an established company, quality control will be paramount. However, there is another, more cynical angle to it, too.

When people discover that their drugs are coming from developing countries, they ask why they aren’t cheaper. Buying from developing countries is cheaper for the industry, but they don’t pass these savings on to you. There’s no easy answer to this.

It’s where we come in. We can offer you prescription drugs at a cheaper rate than the standard American pharmacy. You can find out more about us and how we make your medication affordable by clicking here.

Frequently Asked Questions

We hope that we’ve answered your questions about the origin of medicine and who makes medicine. In this section, we’re going to answer some common questions about generic medication and cheaper prescriptions.

Are Generic Drugs as Good as Brand Drugs?

In short, yes, they are. Generic drugs use the same active ingredients as name-brand drugs and have the same effects and risks as their more expensive cousins.

Are Generic Drugs Safe?

You will not be taking any more risk by taking a generic drug than you would be a branded one. They are all approved by the same regulatory body to the same exacting standards. 

When Do Generic Drugs Hit the Market?

When a new medicine is discovered, the pharmaceutical company files for a patent. This gives them up to 20 years of exclusive use. After the patent expires, generic medications can start being produced.

Do Generic Drugs Look the Same as Branded Ones?

If you’re used to a certain visual profile of a tablet, you will need to get used to new ones. Generic drugs cannot infringe on visual trademarks, so often have different names and packaging.

Final Thoughts

We hope that we’ve answered your initial question of, “Where are pharmaceuticals made?” 

Understanding the origin of your medicine is important to many consumers. If you’d like to get your prescriptions cheaper, then look into our service: we may be able to help you!

If you have any questions for us, please get in touch.

Allergies and Asthma: How to Tell the Difference

allergies and asthma

Are your days or nights filled with sneezing, wheezing or other symptoms? You might have allergies, asthma or even both.

Allergies and asthma are separate diseases, but it's not unusual to suffer from both. The most common type of asthma is found in 60 percent of patients. It's called allergic asthma and is a double-trouble combination of allergies and asthma.

Allergies and asthma are treatable. If you learn where you stand with these two diseases, you and your doctor can take control of your symptoms.

Here's everything you need to know about asthma versus allergies. You'll learn what they are, how they differ, how they are similar and what happens when you have both.

What are Allergies?

More than 50 million Americans suffer from at least one type of allergy each year. Allergies are the sixth most common cause of chronic disease in the United States. They are also the most common children's health problem.

Allergies happen when the body's immune system senses a harmless trigger and overreacts. It rushes to your body's defense by releasing chemicals to combat the supposed threat. Unfortunately, having too many of these defensive chemicals causes allergic symptoms. 

Common allergy triggers include:

  • Foods and food additives
  • Medications
  • Dust mites, cockroaches and insect stings 
  • Latex
  • Mold spores
  • Pet dander and urine
  • Pollen and other seasonal elements
  • Dust 

If you have allergies, one or more of these triggers can cause symptoms in your eyes, sinuses, nose, throat, lungs, stomach and skin. For example, allergies can cause itchy eyes, a runny nose, sneezing, coughing, hay fever, hives or eczema.

What Is Asthma?

More than 25 million Americans have asthma, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

An asthma attack happens when airways narrow. The muscles around them grow tighter, and the lining within swells. The airway cells produce thick mucus. These problems make it more difficult to get air in and out of the lungs, which are expanding during this time. People with asthma say it feels like they're not getting enough air.

Asthma involves breathing and other lung-related symptoms, although they vary. The most common symptoms are cough (especially at night), shortness of breath, wheezing and chest tightness. Before an asthma attack, many of these symptoms get worse. Asthmatics may also feel very weak and tired, and they struggle to sleep before an attack.

The Double Whammy: Allergic Asthma

When allergies cause asthma, the disease is called allergic asthma or allergy-induced asthma. For example, a person with a pollen allergy who also gets asthma attacks from pollen has allergic asthma.

Unfortunately, if you have an asthma attack from allergens, then you may also suffer from allergy symptoms at the same time.

You have a higher risk of developing allergic asthma if you have allergies, hay fever or a family history of allergies.

How Allergies and Asthma Are Different

Allergies are twice as common as asthma. Allergy symptoms can vary much more than they do in asthma, which is primarily a breathing problem.

Allergens, which trigger allergies, also trigger allergic asthma. However, some asthmatics' symptoms are not based on the same immune reaction as allergies. Their asthma starts in other situations, such as:

  • Cold air, humidity and fast temperature changes
  • Exercise, especially for children
  • Infections, including viruses
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
  • Stress and strong emotions, such as laughing or crying
  • Strong chemical odors and fragrances

How These Diseases Are Similar

Allergies and asthma can both cause wheezing and coughing, but asthma's hallmark is limiting the ability to breathe. If you sometimes feel you're not getting enough air, talk to your doctor about asthma.

If you know you have asthma but are also getting sinus, eye or other symptoms that allergies would explain, you need to visit your doctor.

Both diseases range widely in severity. Some people find their allergies or asthma to be a minor nuisance, while others face life-threatening reactions.

Both allergies and asthma are not static situations. The severity can change, as can triggers. If you have one or both diseases, you may gain new symptoms over time, or they may go away. The impact of these diseases can change throughout your lifetime.

No matter what your situation looks like now, remember that allergies, asthma and allergic asthma are all treatable.

Treatment: Remove Triggers in Your Environment

Avoiding triggers is the first line of treatment for both diseases. When exposures aren't setting off internal alarms, your immune system will relax.

If seasonal problems like pollen trigger your symptoms, avoid the outdoors and close your windows. You can monitor pollen counts to find the best time of day or week to get outside. When you come back in, change your shoes and clothes and take a shower to help keep your home's air clear.

If mold is a trigger, control the moisture in your home with dehumidifiers. Frequently clean damp areas, such as bathrooms and the basement.

To reduce exposure to multiple triggers, take extra steps to improve indoor air quality. Remove pet dander, pollen and dust by vacuuming carpet, rugs, upholstery and window coverings twice a week. Wash bedding often. Use special pillow and mattress protectors designed to keep dust mites and other allergens away. Consider purchasing an air purifier.

Treatment: Medications for Both Diseases

Asthma and allergy medications can significantly help people keep their symptoms at bay. Common prescriptions include antihistamines, nasal sprays and inhalers.

Some doctors give allergy shots, which expose patients to small amounts of their triggers. These shots can help their bodies build up a tolerance.

If you have allergic asthma, treating your allergies also helps reduce your asthma symptoms.

Find Affordable Prescriptions Online

If you have allergies and asthma, see your doctor regularly to ensure you're getting the best treatment. Your doctor may prescribe medications to better manage your body's reactions to triggers.

If you have any prescriptions, consider ordering them online from a Canadian pharmacy. You may save money, and the medications will conveniently arrive in the mail. Learn how to order from our pharmacy or contact us to learn more.

7 Signs of Type 2 Diabetes You Cannot Ignore

undiagnosed diabetes

undiagnosed diabetes

In the United States, more than 30 million people are living with type 2 diabetes.

This is a big number, but since type 2 diabetes is one of the most common types it's safe to assume that there are more than 100 million people in the United States battling this disease, but they don't know it. 

If you're wondering if you could be one of the many people that don't know if they have type 2 diabetes, we are here to help. Below we have created a list of the most common warning signs for undiagnosed diabetes.

Keep reading below to become aware and familiar with the warning signs.  

First Things First: What Is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is one of the most common forms of diabetes in the world. With this being said, it's also one of the most undiagnosed diabetes types. 

When someone has type 2 diabetes it means that they have insulin resistance. This resistance means that their body does not use and produce insulin properly and their body can't get glucose into its cells. This can lead to high blood sugar and other health issues.

Below you will find the top 7 warning signs of type 2 diabetes. If you have noticed any of these warnings it would be best to schedule an appointment with your doctor right away.

It's also important to keep in mind that everyone's body is different. Don't assume you do or don't have the disease. If any of the symptoms apply to you, schedule an appointment with your doctor right away. 

1. Dramatic and Unwanted Weight Loss

When your cells don't get enough glucose it may cause you to lose weight because your body isn't getting the nutrition it needs. This can be due to frequent urination having you lose more calories and water than you take in.

2. Any Type of Numbness In Body

Those diagnosed with diabetes have issues with parts of their bodies such as feet, arms, hands, etc. This is because having a long time exposure to high glucose levels in the blood can lead to nerve damage.

If you notice any numbness, pain, or tingling in your body it could be an early stage of diabetes. Usually, this condition, known as diabetic neuropathy, will begin in the feet and work its way up. This condition will be more common in those that have let their diabetes go undiagnosed and untreated for many years.

3. Urinating More Frequently Than Usual

When someone has type 2 diabetes this means there will be excess glucose in their blood. When this happens the kidneys will respond to this heightened level of glucose by flushing out of the blood and transferring it to the urine.

If there is a lot of glucose in your blood this can lead to urinating more frequently than you normally do. Even an increase in urinary tract infections (UTI) in men and women can be a sign of type 2 diabetes. 

4. Being Thirsty All the Time and Not Able To Quench It

When there are high glucose levels in the blood it can cause you to become more thirsty than normal. This is due to urinating more frequently and can be looked at as a domino effect. 

If you find that you have dry mouth more than you usually do or are feeling abnormally thirsty, these could be an undiagnosed diabetes symptom.

5. A Hunger You Can't Satisfy

Since those with type 2 diabetes have insulin resistance their pancreas will overreact and begin producing more insulin than the body needs to try and compensate for the deficiency. When you have high insulin levels your body will notify your brain that you need food to create more insulin.

6. Important For Women: Frequent Infections and Feminine Health Issues 

Elevated blood sugar levels cause yeast and bacteria to multiply at a quicker rate than if blood sugar levels are normal. This means that women are at a higher risk for feminine health issues due to the heightened yeast and bacteria levels.

These health issues can include yeast infections, bacterial infections, and vaginal thrush. If you've noticed that you're getting these issues more frequently than usual it is worth scheduling an appointment to be tested for type 2 diabetes.

7. Infections In the Foot

In both women and men that have prediabetes symptoms, feet infections can happen more often due to being at high risk. As stated above, elevated sugar levels in your blood cause bacteria to multiply at an alarming rate. This means that if you get a cut or wound on your foot, it can be almost impossible to heal it properly due to the multiplying bacteria.

Even though foot issues are usually seen in those that have diabetes later in life, it doesn't mean that it can't be a symptom of undiagnosed diabetes due to blood sugar being uncontrolled for years. 

Now You Have a Better Idea of Undiagnosed Diabetes Symptoms

If you've noticed that you're urinating more often than usual, feeling hungry all the time, and not being able to quench your thirst, you may have type 2 diabetes. It's good to keep in mind that everyone's body is different, so you shouldn't assume you have the disease without getting tested.

Now, if you've noticed these symptoms don't assume you don't have type 2 diabetes. The best way to find out is to call your doctor and to make an appointment.

We hope that our top 7 undiagnosed diabetes symptoms will help you be more aware of the warning signs. For more information on health and prescriptions be sure to check out our website here

Healthcare in Canada vs US: 3 Essential Differences

healthcare in Canada vs US

Did you know that the average monthly cost for a single person to buy health insurance is $403 in the US versus $160 in Canada? It’s important to understand what you are getting the price.

There are differences and similarities in healthcare in Canada vs US. This article will compare these two healthcare systems. Keep reading to learn more.

Healthcare in Canada vs US

Healthcare plans and coverage are different in the US versus Canada. It is important to explore the whole picture before drawing conclusions. Here are some key points for consideration.

Insurance Coverage Options

Canada: Taxpayers pay for Canadian citizens’ and permanent residents’ healthcare. This is a “free” and public healthcare system. Yet, if you are not a resident, you will need to cover some costs on your own.

The public healthcare system, called Medicare, covers most basic medical services. The plans differ from one province and territory to another. All areas cover emergency medical services even if you’re not enrolled in the public system.

Canadians may receive some healthcare benefits through employers. They also have the option to buy gap insurance policies.

Single-payer or universal coverage is not affected by loss or change of job. While people tend to use preventative medicine more, there are fewer long-term care needs in Canada.

United States: In the US, there are many avenues to getting health insurance. The plans vary in the amount of coverage for medical services and prescription drugs. Individuals must choose between low-cost plans with high out-of-pocket expenses or high-cost plans with low deductibles.

Most plans require the participant to pay a set amount, called a deductible. Once you meet the deductible, the covered percentage increases. Options for health care coverage includes:

  • Coverage benefits through your employers or your spouse/partner’s employer
  • Purchasing directly from a health insurance company or via the Health Insurance Market
  • Government programs including Medicare, Medicaid, or the Children’s Health Insurance Program
  • Benefits for military personnel through the Veterans Administration or TRICARE
  • State Health Insurance Plans (if available)
  • Paying for continued temporary coverage after leaving a job under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA)
  • The Affordable Care Act to cover health expenses not covered by an employer

Each type of coverage has eligibility requirements for enrollment. Individual out-of-pocket cost varies among the different plans.

Prescription Medication Coverage

Canada: Coverage for medications varies between provinces and territories due to different cost-sharing mechanisms. There are specific programs for citizens receiving social assistance, seniors, and people under the age of 65. There are also specialty plans targeting diseases such as cancer, palliative care, and infectious diseases.

For example, citizens under the age of 65 may pay low prices in some provinces while others have deductibles ranging from 2% to 35% of their income. Some must also pay coinsurance. In other provinces, there’s only one plan regardless of age.

Several provinces use a sliding scale based on the individual’s income. This offers greater support from the government for those with low incomes.

United States: Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage (Part D) has a gap in their prescription drug coverage. This is called the “donut hole”. When the Medicare maximum drug payment reaches $3,820, they must begin paying for medications.

While in the “donut hole” they pay 25% for brand name drugs and 37% for generic drugs. Once the individual pays $5,100, including their deductible, they pay 5% for the rest of the year.

The donut hole will end in 2020. Medicare Participants will pay 25% for generic drugs until they meet the “catastrophic level” decided by the government.

Private insurance holders pay various deductibles and are sometimes limited on which medications they can take. Benefits vary among different insurance plans.

The Patient Healthcare Experience

Canada: Their universal health-care system is one of the most expensive among developed countries. Yet, there are imbalances between the value of care received and the amount of money spent on healthcare.

For example, there are fewer physicians and hospital beds available. They also have fewer medical technologies including MRIs and CT scanners.

Canada is the only member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) that disallows private financing for medically necessary services. Specialist physicians are also restricted from practicing in both publicly funded universal institutions and in private settings. Canada and the United Kingdom are the only OECD countries that don’t require patients to share the cost of medically necessary treatment.

United States: Most Americans feel secure that when serious injuries or illness occurs, they will have healthcare professionals to take care of them. Medical advances in treatment are being made every day at world-renowned institutions around the country.

Yet, some Americans still struggle to get the treatment and services they need. Access to healthcare is fragmented. This is especially true for lower socioeconomic groups and those with advanced illnesses.

A project was conducted called Health Care in America: The Experience of People with Serious Illness. This survey showed that 6 of 10 people with a serious illness reported at least one problem accessing care. Almost one-third of patients said they had trouble understanding their insurance coverage.

Twenty-three percent reported receiving conflicting recommendations from practitioners. Twenty-nine percent said they had duplicate tests or procedures. This increases the healthcare cost burden.

The ability to directly choose your practitioner varies based on the insurance plan and which plans are accepted by the physicians. Some policies require patients to use a “gatekeeper”.

Summary of Findings

A study in the Forum for Health Economics & Policy compared healthcare in Canada and the US. They found an increased incidence of chronic health conditions in the US. Yet, Americans had greater access to treatment for their conditions.

More US men and women were screened for common types of cancer. The mortality/incidence ratios of different cancers were higher in Canada.

The effort to deliver “free” healthcare has led to a rationing of resources in Canada. This has led to increased wait times to receive care.

In the US, many individuals do not receive medical care due to costs beyond their means. This study found that health status also correlated with income in Canada. In fact, this report stated that “the health-income gradient is slightly steeper in Canada than in the US.”

So, Which Is the Better Healthcare System Option?

The healthcare in Canada vs US both have pros and cons. Ongoing examination of what works and what needs improvement will lead both countries to more positive patient experiences and outcomes.

If you need prescription medications, PriceProPharmacy.com fills orders in Canada and the US. All medications come from licensed and certified dispensing pharmacies.

Contact us today to ask questions and learn more about our products.

Viagra vs Cialis: What’s the Difference?

viagra vs cialis

It's predicted that by 2025, 322 million men across the globe will suffer from erectile dysfunction. This common ailment can be embarrassing and it can also lead to marital problems as well as other mental health issues.

Erectile dysfunction might also be a sign of cardiovascular problems.

Luckily, there are ways to overcome erectile dysfunction by taking medications like Viagra or Cialis.

But what's the difference when it comes to Viagra vs Cialis? And which one is right for you?

Continue reading and we'll walk you through everything that you need to know so that you can medicate properly.

Viagra

Viagra is a PDE5 inhibitor and is to treat erectile dysfunction. Viagra is an oral pill and is only effective when the user is sexually aroused.

A PDE5 inhibitor is a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor that is able to decrease pulmonary vascular pressure and prolong an erection.

It takes about 20 minutes for Viagra to take effect and it can last up to 4.5 hours.

Viagra was the first PDE5 inhibitor approved by the FDA to treat erectile dysfunction. 

Sildenafil is the main active ingredient in Viagra and was originally being test by Pfizer to treat angina and hypertension. During the clinical trials, however, researchers noticed that sildenafil was more effective at bringing on erections than it was at treating heart disease.

Pfizer realized that erectile dysfunction was a major yet untreated problem and could be an opportunity for huge financial profit.

Viagra was then approved by the FDA in 1998.

How Viagra Works

The main function of Viagra is to help give a man an erection and sustain it when he is sexually aroused.

When a man is sexually aroused, the muscles in his penis relax. This allows for more blood to flow to his penis.

Viagra is able to raise the levels of the substance that is responsible for the tissues relaxing. This increased relaxation of tissue leads to an increased inflow of blood, thus allowing for an erection.

The Side Effects of Viagra

Viagra and other PDE5 inhibitors generally have short-lived and mild side effects. The most common side effects of Viagra are:

  • Flushing
  • Vision problems
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Heartburn
  • Nausea

 

 

It's rare but possible for a man to have an erection for longer than four hours after having taken viagra. This is known as priapism and if you experience it then you should seek emergency treatment.

You should also contact your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any sudden vision or hearing loss.

Cialis

Like Viagra, Cialis is a PDE5 inhibitor that is used to treat erectile dysfunction. Cialis is the brand name for tadalafil while Viagra is the brand name for the drug sildenafil.

One big difference between Cialis and Viagra is that, while Viagra only lasts for around 4 hours, Cialis can last as long as 36 hours.

Also, while food might affect the strength of Viagra, it won't have any effect on Cialis.

Cialis is the third PDE5 inhibitor to hit the market, which it did in 2003.

 

Cialis takes between 16 and 45 minutes to take effect. The effectiveness of Cialis and Viagra is about equal.

Because Cialis lasts so long, it can mean that you'd be at higher risk for drug interactions. Also, you may have to reduce your dosage if you suffer from liver or kidney disease.

Side Effects of Cialis

Like Viagra, the side effects of Cialis typically don't last long and are rarely severe.

The most common side effects include:

  • Flushing
  • Stuffy nose
  • Headache
  • Upset stomach
  • Muscle or back pain

If you happen to show signs of an allergic reaction to Cialis - such as trouble breathing, swelling of your lips, throat, tongue or face, hives - then seek emergency help.

Also, if you experience chest pain, nausea, or dizziness while having sex after having taken Cialis, you should stop and seek emergency help immediately.

Dosages

You should take Viagra on an as-needed basis, around 1 hour before sexual activity, at a dose of 50mg. You can also take Viagra anywhere from half an hour to 4 hours before sex.

If the dose is ineffective, it can be increased to 100mg or even decreased to 25mg if it's too intense.

Even though the effects of Viagra only last for around 4 hours, you should still only take the pill once a day.

Cialis can be taken daily or on an as-needed basis. As-needed doses are usually bigger than daily ones. Cialis is normally taken at a starting dose of 10mg. The dosage can also be increased to 20mg or decreased to 5mg.

When taken for daily use, it's recommended that you start with a dosage of 2.5mg. The timing of the daily dose doesn't matter. You shouldn't take more than one day per day.

Cost

Cialis costs around $48 for the 20mg strength and $8.50 for the 5mg strength, per pill.

Viagra is around $35 for the 100mg strength and #24 for the 50mg strength.

The Importance of Knowing the Difference When it Comes to Viagra Vs Cialis

Although Viagra and Cialis share many similarities, it's clear that there are also several important differences between them. Especially when it comes to how long they last and how much each medication costs. 

This is why it's so important that you review all of the information for Viagra vs Cialis before you and decide which medication is best suited for your lifestyle and budget.

Are you interested in purchasing prescription medications like Viagra or Cialis? Contact us today and see how we can help you!

 

 

What Is Januvia? Everything You Need to Know About Januvia and Its Benefits

januvia

According to a HealthDay report, 1 in 7 Americans has diabetes. Although this blood sugar disease is chronic, many treatment options help manage it.

In this post, we will discuss everything you need to know about diabetes medication Januvia.

What is Januvia?

Januvia is a brand name prescription medication used to treat type 2 diabetes. Doctors may also prescribe other medicines for diabetes along with Januvia. This medication is intended to be used in conjunction with diet and exercise.

Januvia is a dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP-4) inhibitor. This means that it balances insulin levels and decreases the amount of blood sugar your body produces.

Unlike many other treatments for diabetes, Januvia comes in a tablet form. It is available in three strengths: 25mg 50mg, 100mg. It is usually prescribed in one 100mg dosage.

How Does Januvia Work?

Managing blood sugar is an essential part of living with diabetes. Your body helps control blood sugar levels with a hormone called insulin.

Those with diabetes develop resistance to this hormone. This means that your body can’t use insulin to control blood glucose levels. Januvia works by increasing the amount of insulin in the body, which lowers blood sugar levels.

It may take about a week after taking sitagliptin until blood glucose levels begin to decrease. It helps to monitor your blood sugar to see when the medication starts to take effect.

Januvia is a long-term treatment for type 2 diabetes— it doesn’t cure it. Therefore, when you notice a dip in blood sugar levels, don’t stop taking it — unless told to by a doctor. If you stop this blood sugar medication suddenly, your blood sugar levels will increase.

Is Januvia Effective?

Januvia is proven to be useful for people with type 2 diabetes.

In an 18-week clinical trial, 193 people who had not taken diabetes for seven weeks, took Januvia. At the end of the study, participants showed an improvement in blood sugar levels. Specifically, their AC1 levels were 0.5% lower than before the study — AC1 is a test that measures blood sugar levels.

Another clinical study, participants took sitagliptin for 24 weeks. The results showed that Januvia reduced AC1 levels by 0.8% more than the placebo group.

Also, Januvia was found to be no more effective than other medications used to treat type 2 diabetes. In a review of studies that compared the effectiveness of Januvia and Tradjenta, Januvia was found to be effective as Tradjenta.

What are the Side Effects of Januvia?

The side effects of Januvia range from mild to severe. For more information on all of the side effects, talk to your doctor or pharmacist — they will be able to give you advice on how to manage them.

Most Common Side Effects

The common side effects include the following:

  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches
  • Ear congestion
  • sneezing

These side effects usually clear up within a few days or weeks. If they persist or worsen, consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Severe Side Effects

Severe side effects are rare, but they can occur. They include the following:

Hypoglycemia

  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Jitteriness
  • Hunger
  • Irritability
  • Sweating
  • Weakness

Dangerous Allergic Reactions

  • Painful sores in the mouth
  • Anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction that includes low pulse rate, trouble breathing, and sudden drop in blood pressure)
  • Angioedema (swelling under the skin, usually in eyelids, lips, hands or feet)

Kidney Issues

  • Coma
  • Confusion
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Chest pain
  • Nausea
  • Reduced urine output
  • Seizures
  • Leg swelling
  • Shortness of breath

Pancreatitis

  • Tender and swollen abdomen
  • Indigestion
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Hiccups
  • Weight loss
  • Upper body pain
  • Fever

Is it Possible to Overdose on Januvia?

Taking more than the prescribed amount can result in severe side effects. Some of the signs of an overdose include:

  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Sweating
  • Trouble speaking
  • Stomach pain
  • Tremors
  • Confusion
  • Seizures

If you suspect you’ve overdosed, call your doctor or American Association of Poison Control Centers at 1-800-222-1222.

Drug Interactions

Januvia is known to interact with other medications. Additionally, it can interact with some supplements and herbs. Some drugs and supplements affect the way Januvia works, while other drugs increase side effects.

Januvia could interact with the following drugs:

  • Trulicity
  • Birth control
  • Digoxin
  • Furosemide
  • Glimepiride
  • Glipizide
  • Lantus
  • Lisinopril

Supplement interactions include:

  • Aloe vera
  • Ginseng
  • Olive leaf extract
  • Sesame oil
  • St. John’s Wart
  • Prickly pear cactus
  • ginger

This isn’t the complete list of drug and supplement interactions. Before taking Juvania, talk to your doctor about the possible interactions.

Can You Take Januvia While Pregnant or Breastfeeding?

Not much is known about the safety of taking Januvia while pregnant. However, in animal studies, no issues were found in the mother or fetus when given Januvia. It’s worth mentioning that animal studies are not indicative of how the medication will affect humans.

If you become pregnant while taking this medication, tell your physician. They will be able to give you alternative treatment options.

In addition, there is not much research about Januvia being in the breast milk of humans. But in studies done on animals, the medication was present in breast milk. The study also showed that the medication has no adverse effects on the baby animals.

Can You Drink Alcohol While Taking Januvia?

There are no known interactions between sitagliptin and alcohol. However, heavy drinking will result in a decrease in blood sugar and lead to hypoglycemia. Therefore, if you have diabetes it is advised to drink alcohol in moderation.

Ask Your Doctor If Januvia is Right for You

Januvia is an excellent treatment option for those with type 2 diabetes. It is proven to be effective in treating the condition and is generally safe.

Not sure how you can order your Januvia prescription on Pricepro Pharmacy? View our guide on how to order a prescription.

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