Diabetes Home > Actos (Pioglitazone) Diabetes Medicine

As a prescription diabetes medicine, Actos® (pioglitazone hydrochloride) can be used by itself or in combination with other medications to treat type 2 diabetes (also known as noninsulin-dependent diabetes or adult-onset diabetes).
As part of a group of diabetes medications called thiazolidinediones (or sometimes called "glitazones"), Actos works by improving insulin sensitivity. This means that this medicine helps your body to use its natural insulin better, which, in turn, helps to lower blood sugar and keep it under better control.
Studies have shown that by getting blood sugar levels under control with Actos, it may be possible to decrease the chances for developing diabetes complications, such as heart disease, diabetic retinopathy, diabetic neuropathy, and diabetic nephropathy.
Fasting blood sugar is another way to study the effects of a diabetes medication. Actos has been shown to decrease fasting blood sugar levels by 30 to 56 mg/dL.
(Click Actos for more details on how this diabetes medicine works to lower blood sugar levels. This article also discusses the effectiveness of this medication, possible side effects, and safety precautions to review before beginning treatment.)
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Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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