Tradjenta and Jentadueto belong to a family of drugs called DPP-4 inhibitors. The drugs are linked to pancreatitis and may also increase the risk of pancreatic cancer.
How Does Tradjenta Work?Tradjenta was the third drug to join a class of diabetes drugs known as dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors (DPP-4 inhibitors), which are also referred to as gliptins. It is used along with diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in those with type 2 diabetes. The first DPP-4 inhibitor, Januvia (sitagliptin), was approved in 2006 and is manufactured by Merck & Co. The second drug to be introduced to this class was Onglyza (saxagliptin) in 2009, manufactured by Bristol-Myers and AstraZeneca. Takeda’s Nesina (alogliptin) was approved in early 2013. DPP-4 inhibitors, like all type 2 diabetes medications, work to lower blood sugar levels. As the body absorbs food, blood sugar rises. This rise in blood sugar prompts the release of incretin hormones, which signal the pancreas to release insulin. Insulin converts the blood sugar into energy. DPP-4 breaks down incretin, letting the pancreas know that balance has been restored and that no more insulin is needed. DPP-4 inhibitors, like Januvia and Tradjenta, limit the function of DPP-4, to allow an increase in insulin that is needed to control blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.
Tradjenta's Serious Side EffectsThe side effects of Tradjenta are similar to other DPP-4 inhibitors and incretin-based diabetes drugs like Byetta, because they all act on the same process. Side effects can range from allergic reactions, to mild symptoms like a headache or runny nose, to life-threatening conditions like the inflammation of the pancreas.
HypoglycemiaLike many diabetes medications, Tradjenta can cause hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. If Tradjenta is prescribed alongside another diabetes drug, doctors will likely lower its dosage to prevent hypoglycemia.
|Signs of hypoglycemia can include:|
|Light-headedness or dizziness||Confusion|
|Headache||Rapid heart rate|