The primary Avandaryl uses include improving insulin sensitivity and helping the pancreas to produce more insulin in people with type 2 diabetes. As a result, Avandaryl can lower blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of developing problems related to diabetes, such as diabetic impotence, kidney failure, and heart disease. Avandaryl has not been approved for use in children.
What Is Avandaryl Used For?
Avandaryl® (rosiglitazone and glimepiride) is a prescription medication that is used to treat type 2 diabetes. The drug is a combination of two different diabetes medications: rosiglitazone maleate (Avandia®) and glimepiride (Amaryl®).
Avandaryl cannot be used to treat type 1 diabetes.
In September 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it would be severely restricting the use of rosiglitazone, one of the active ingredients in Avandaryl, due to the risk of "cardiovascular events" such as heart attacks and strokes. Only individuals who cannot control their diabetes on other medications (or those who are already taking the medication and doing well) will be able to take Avandaryl.
Using Avandaryl for Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes (see Diabetes Types). It is also sometimes called adult-onset diabetes or noninsulin-dependent diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is a condition involving insulin resistance. With insulin resistance, the cells of the body do not respond to insulin as well as they normally should. As a result, the cells do not take sugar out of the blood very well. This is why type 2 diabetics have high blood sugar.
Over time, high blood sugar can lead to a number of problems, including diabetic impotence, diabetic neuropathy, kidney failure, and heart disease (see Diabetes Complications). The cause of type 2 diabetes is not fully understood, although it is known that obesity and genetics play an important role.
Avandaryl is used for treating type 2 diabetes in people who cannot lower blood sugar through lifestyle changes (such as weight loss, diet, and exercise). Avandaryl is a combination of two different diabetes drugs (rosiglitazone and glimepiride). These two medications work differently and have different effects in the body:
- Rosiglitazone is part of a group of medications called thiazolidinediones (or sometimes called "glitazones"). Rosiglitazone helps to improve insulin sensitivity, meaning that it helps your body to use its natural insulin better. This helps to lower blood sugar and keep it under better control.
- Glimepiride is part of a class of diabetes medications known as sulfonylureas (see Avandaryl Alternatives). As a sulfonylurea, glimepiride helps the pancreas to produce more insulin. Glimepiride may also help the cells of the body respond better to insulin. Because of these effects, blood sugar levels decrease.