glipizide, Glipizide XL, Glucotrol, Glucotrol XL

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Eni Williams, PharmD, PhD

    Dr. Eni Williams graduated from Creighton University in 1988 with a B.S. degree in pharmacy and a Doctor of Pharmacy from Howard University in 1994. She also obtained a Ph.D. in Public Policy in 2009 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

  • Pharmacy Author: Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is glipizide, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Glipizide is an oral drug that is used for treating patients with type 2 diabetes. It belongs to the sulfonylurea class of drugs which also includes glimepiride (Amaryl), glyburide (Diabeta, Glynase), tolbutamide and tolazamide. Insulin is a hormone that is made in the pancreas that when released into the blood causes cells in the body to remove sugar (glucose) from the blood and reduces the formation of glucose by the liver. Patients with type 2 diabetes have high glucose (sugar) levels in their blood because the cells in their bodies are resistant to the glucose-removing effect of the insulin, and the liver produces too much glucose. In addition, in type 2 diabetes the pancreas is unable to produce the increased amounts of insulin that are necessary to overcome the resistance. Glipizide reduces blood glucose by stimulating the pancreas to produce more insulin.

Glipizide is not a cure for diabetes.

The FDA approved glipizide in May 1984.

What brand names are available for glipizide?

Glipizide XL, Glucotrol, Glucotrol XL

Is glipizide available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for glipizide?

Yes

What are the side effects of glipizide?

Side effects include:

headache,

dizziness,

nausea,

vomiting,

diarrhea,

heartburn, and

gas.

Skin rashes can occur and cause itching, hives, or a diffuse measles-like rash.

Rare but serious side effects include:

Glipizide also may cause hypoglycemia. The risk of hypoglycemia increases when glipizide is combined with other glucose reducing agents.

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