What is gliclazide?


Generic Name: Gliclazide Brand Name(s): Generics only. No brands available.

Know the basics

What is gliclazide used for?

Gliclazide is used in conjunction with diet and exercise regimens to control high blood sugar in non-insulin dependent diabetic patients. Controlling high blood sugar helps prevent heart disease, strokes, kidney disease, circulation problems, and blindness

How should I take gliclazide?

Gliclazide comes in different types of tablets which provide different amounts of the medication. Do not switch between different forms or brands of gliclazide unless directed by your doctor.

Take gliclazide by mouth with breakfast or the first main meal of the day as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. Some patients, especially those taking higher doses, may be directed to take this drug twice a day. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment.

To reduce your risk of side effects, your doctor may direct you to start gliclazide at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor’s instructions carefully.

If you are already taking another anti-diabetic drug (such as chlorpropamide), follow your doctor’s directions carefully for stopping the old drug and starting gliclazide.

If you are also taking colesevelam, take gliclazide at least 4 hours before colesevelam.

Use gliclazide regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time(s) each day.

Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens (your blood sugar levels are too high or too low).

How do I store gliclazide?

Gliclazide is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store gliclazide in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of gliclazide that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush gliclazide down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Know the precautions & warnings

What should I know before using gliclazide?

Before using this medication, tell your doctor if you:

  • are allergic to Gliclazide or any of the other ingredients of this medicine, to other medicines;
  • of the same group (sulphonylureas), to other related medicines (hypoglycaemic sulphonamides);
  • have insulin-dependant diabetes (type 1);
  • suffer from severe kidney or liver problems;
  • suffer from diabetes complicated with ketosis or acidosis;
  • suffer from a diabetic pre-coma and coma;
  • are taking medicines to treat fungal infections;
  • are breastfeeding (see Section Pregnancy, breast-feeding and fertility);
  • you are diabetic and undergoing surgery, after trauma or during serious infections;
  • have porphyria (a hereditary disease affecting the liver or bone marrow).

This medicine should NOT be given to treat diabetes in children.

Is it safe to take gliclazide during pregnancy or breast-feeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using this medication during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking this medication. This medication is pregnancy risk category C for the first 6 months, and D for the last 3 months according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk,
  • B=No risk in some studies,
  • C=There may be some risk,
  • D=Positive evidence of risk,
  • X=Contraindicated,
  • N=Unknown

Know the side effects

What are the side effects of gliclazide?

Side effects include:

  • Low blood sugar (Hypoglycaemia).

The most commonly observed side effect is low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia).

If left untreated these symptoms could progress to drowsiness, loss of consciousness or possibly coma. If an episode of low blood sugar is severe or prolonged, even if it is temporarily controlled by eating sugar, you should seek immediate medical attention.

  • Blood disorders: Decrease in the number of cells in the blood has been reported (e.g. platelets, red and white blood cells).

This may cause:

  • Paleness;
  • Prolonged bleeding
  • Bruising;
  • Sore throat;
  • Fever;
  • Tiredness, being short of breath;
  • Nose bleeds;
  • Mouth ulcers, severe chills.

These symptoms usually vanish when the treatment is discontinued:

  • Liver disorders.

There have been isolated reports of abnormal liver function, which can cause yellow skin and eyes. If you get this, see your doctor immediately. The symptoms generally disappear if the medicine is stopped. Your doctor will decide whether to stop your treatment.

Skin disorders:

Skin reactions have been reported such as:

  • Rash;
  • Redness;
  • Itching;
  • Angioedema (rapid swelling of tissues such as eyelids, face, lips, mouth, tongue or throat that may result in breathing difficulty);
  • Skin reactions to sunlight.

The rash may progress to widespread blistering or peeling of the skin. (for example, the potentially fatal Stevens-Johnson syndrome or toxic epidermal necrolysis).

Digestive disorders include:

  • Stomach pain or discomfort;
  • Feeling or being sick;
  • Vomiting;
  • Indigestion;
  • Diarrhoea;
  • Constipation;
  • Eye disorders: Your vision may be affected for a short time especially at the start of treatment. This effect is due to changes in blood sugar levels.

With sulphonylureas, cases of severe changes in the number of blood cells and allergic inflammation of the wall of blood vessels, reduction in blood sodium (hyponatraemia), have been described. Symptoms of liver impairment (e.g. jaundice) have been observed which in most cases disappeared after withdrawal of the sulphonylureas, but may lead to life threatening liver failure in isolated cases..

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Know the interactions

What drugs may interact with gliclazide?

Gliclazide may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

The blood sugar lowering effect of gliclazide may be strengthened and signs of low blood sugar levels may occur when one of the following medicines is taken:

  • other medicines used to treat high blood sugar (oral antidiabetics, GLP-1 receptor inhibitors or insulin);
  • antibiotics (e.g. sulphonamides, clarithromycin);
  • medicines to treat high blood pressure or heart failure (beta blockers, Antiarrhythmics, ACE- inhibitors such as captopril or enalapril);
  • medicines to treat fungal infections (miconazole, fluconazole);
  • medicines to treat ulcers in the stomach or duodenum (H2 receptor antagonists);
  • medicines to treat depression (monoamine oxidase inhibitors), painkiller or antirheumatics (phenylbutazone, ibuprofen);
  • medicines containing alcohol;
  • Sulphonamide antibiotics, e.g. sulfamethoxazole, co-trimoxazole;
  • Antibacterials including clarithromycin, tetracycline compounds, oral forms of miconazole, trimethoprim and chloramphenicol;
  • Medicines used to reduce high blood fat levels (Lipid lowering agents e.g. clofibrate);
  • Hormones such as testosterone or octreotide;
  • Medicines used to treat gout (e.g. sulfinpyrazone).
  • Medicines used to treat breast or prostate cancer (e.g.aminoglutethimide).
  • Thyroid hormones used to treat thyroid problems e.g. thyroxine.
  • The blood glucose lowering effect of gliclazide may be weakened and raised blood sugar levels may occur when one of the following medicines is taken: medicines to treat disorders of the central nervous system (chlorpromazine), medicines reducing inflammation (corticosteroids), medicines to treat asthma or used during labour (intravenous salbutamol, ritodrine and terbutaline), medicines to treat breast disorders, heavy menstrual bleeding and endometriosis (danazol).
  • Medicines which increases urine flow (Diuretics, especially thiazide diuretics, e.g. bendroflumethiazide).
  • Oral contraceptives e.g. oestrogens and progesterones.
  • Rifamycins (antibacterial medicine);
  • Laxatives used for constipation e.g. magnesium hydroxide.
  • Adrenocorticotropic hormones (ACTH) used in the treatment of adrenal insufficiency of central origin.e.g. tetracosactrin.
  • Gliclazide may increase the effects of medicines which reduce blood clotting (e.g. warfarin).
  • The effect of gliclazide may be diminished when taken along with Diazoxide (for high blood pressure).
  • The effect of gliclazide may be reduced when taken along with Lithium (to treat mental health problems) and nifedipine (to treat high blood pressure).

Consult your doctor before you start taking

Does food or alcohol interact with gliclazide?

Gliclazide may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with gliclazide?

Gliclazide may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have, especially:

  • If you have kidney or liver problems.
  • If you have been told you have porphyria or glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency. These are rare inherited disorders.

Understand the Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. ALWAYS consult your doctor or pharmacist before using this medication.

What is the dose of Gliclazide for an adult?

Type 2 diabetes mellitus
Adult: Initially, 40-80 mg orally daily gradually increased to 320 mg daily if necessary. Doses >160 mg daily may be given in 2 divided doses. For modified release tab: Initially, 30 mg once daily, may increase up to 120 mg daily.

What is the dose of Gliclazide for a child?

The dosage has not been established in pediatric patients. It may be unsafe for your child. It is always important to fully understand the safety of the drug before using. Please consult with your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

How is gliclazide available?

Gliclazide is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Tablet, Oral: 40 mg, 60 mg, 80 mg.
  • Tablet Modified Release: 30 mg.

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of gliclazide, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: May 30, 2016 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017

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