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Diabetes Information

Januvia, Galvus, Onglyza, Trajenta, Nesina (DPP-4 Inhibitors)

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Brand Name Generic Name
Januvia (juh-NOO-vee-uh) sitagliptin (sih-tuh-GLIP-tin)
Galvus/Equa* vildagliptin (VIL-dah-glip-tin)
Onglyza (ON-gly-zuh) saxagliptin (SAX-uh-glip-tin)
Trajenta (Traj-EN-tuh) linagliptin (linn-ah-GLIP-tin)
Nesina** alogliptin (Al-oh-GLIP-tin)
*  Approved in Europe, Japan, China; not approved in USA
** Approved in Japan and USA

What does this type of pill do?

This type of pill lowers your blood glucose by helping your body make more insulin when it's needed, especially right after meals. It also helps keep your liver from putting stored glucose into your blood.

Who should not take DPP-4 Inhibitors?

Talk with your doctor about whether to take this type of pill if

  • you are pregnant, planning to get pregnant, or breastfeeding
  • you have kidney disease
  • you have type 1 diabetes and if you have [had] a condition called diabetic ketoacidosis

What are the possible side effects?

This type of pill doesn't cause low blood glucose by itself. But your risk of having low blood glucose goes up if you also take

  • diabetes pills that cause low blood glucose
  • insulin

Your doctor may ask you to take a lower dose of your other diabetes medicines while you take this type of pill.

Possible side effects are

  • a cold
  • runny nose
  • sore throat
  • headache

If you take DPP-4 Inhibitors and have kidney problems, your health care provider might order blood tests to see how well your kidneys are working.

The DPP-4 inhibitors may contribute to the development of pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer. See American Diabetes Association Calls for Independent Review of Incretin Therapy (June 10, 2013).

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Modified from the NDIC's webpage by addition in the table and text of newer drugs in this class.
NIH Publication No. 11-4222
October 2010


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This page was last updated at D-is-for-Diabetes on June 20, 2013

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