Oral Diabetic Medications That May or May Not Cause Hypoglycemia

Oral diabetic medications that can cause low blood sugar or hypoglycemia

The following sulfonylurea medications for diabetes can cause hypoglycemia or low blood sugar as a side effect.

* Glipizide (Glucotrol)
* Glyburide (such as DiaBeta, Glynase, Micronase)
* Glimepiride (Amaryl)

Repaglinide (Prandin) and nateglinide (Starlix) are not sulfonylurea medications. However, they work in the same way and can also cause low blood sugar as a side effect.

You are unlikely to develop hypoglycemia or low blood sugar levels if you are taking:

* Metformin (Glucophage)
* Acarbose (Precose)
* Rosiglitazone (Avandia)
* Pioglitazone (Actos)

Signs of Hypoglycemia:

**Cold sweat, faintness, dizziness
**Pounding of heart, trembling, nervousness
**blurred vision
**Personality Change
**Not able to awaken

It is important to know if you oral diabetic medication has the side effect of low blood sugar because if you are going out or driving, you should test your blood sugar before you leave and make sure you take hard candy with you in your pocket or purse at all times. You should also have a supply of hard candy in your car at all times and not in the trunk of your car.

If you have the signs of low blood sugar, then you should take a piece of hard candy or juice first and then test your blood sugar.

Usually in 15 minutes taking 15-20 grams of Carbohydrate (CHO) will usually bring up your blood sugar to normal range. You can have a 4-6 ounce glass of juice, glucose tablets or 2-3 pieces of hard candy. Donít overdo it because your blood sugar will then go sky high. If it doesnít return within normal limits in 15 minutes, repeat the 15-20 grams of CHO and then check your blood sugar in 15 minutes.

Please check out the article, Driving, at http://www.diabetestestingcenter.com that goes into more detail about what foods raise your blood sugar, stabilizes your blood sugar and how and when you should test your blood sugar.

Copyright 2005 Fern Kuhn, RN Specializing in Diabetes


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