Actos and Hemoglobin A1c
Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) is a test used to measure long-term blood sugar control. For people without diabetes, HbA1c results are usually less than 6 percent, while people with diabetes usually have higher results. In one study, people taking Actos lowered their HbA1c by up to 0.9 percent on average, while people not taking it increased the HbA1c by 0.7 percent.
Studies have shown that the higher the HbA1c, the greater the chance for developing long-term problems related to diabetes. This includes such problems as heart disease, diabetic retinopathy, diabetic neuropathy, and diabetic nephropathy. By getting blood sugar levels under control with Actos, it may be possible to decrease the chances for developing these diabetes complications.
Actos and Fasting Blood Sugar
Fasting blood sugar is another way to study the effects of a diabetes medication. In studies, people taking Actos decreased their fasting blood sugar levels by 30 to 56 mg/dL, while people not taking the medication increased their fasting blood sugar.
Other Actos Effects
People gained about two to nine pounds on average while taking Actos (see Actos and Weight Gain). Actos can also have effects on both good cholesterol (HDL) and bad cholesterol (LDL) (see Lipid Lowering With Actos).
Some general considerations for when and how to take the medication include:
- Actos comes in tablet form. It should be taken by mouth once daily.
- You can take it with or without food. If it bothers your stomach, try taking it with food.
- The medicine should be taken at the same time each day to maintain an even level of the drug in your blood.
- For it to work properly, it must be taken as prescribed. Actos will not work if you stop taking it.