Diabetes Self-Management Articles

These articles cover a wide range of subjects, from the most basic aspects of diabetes care to the nitty-gritty specifics.

Links not loading properly?

Some of our pages use Portable Document Format (PDF) files, which require Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download Acrobat Reader for free, visit www.adobe.com.

Sign up for our weekly e-mail newsletter and receive a FREE GIFT! Enter your e-mail below.

Learn more

Learn more about diabetes

Links to help you learn more about diabetes.

Ask a diabetes expert
Other diabetes resources
Browse article topics


Oral Medicines for Type 2 Diabetes

by Patti Geil, M.S., R.D., C.D.E., and Laura Hieronymus, M.S.Ed., A.P.R.N., B.C.-A.D.M., C.D.E.

During pregnancy, insulin has always been the treatment of choice for diabetes because oral medicines have long been thought to increase the risk of damage to the fetus. However, research into certain oral medicines (particularly glyburide and metformin) has led to their consideration as treatment for gestational diabetes and Type 2 diabetes during pregnancy. This is an area of controversy, however, and one in which a woman and her health-care team have to carefully weigh the risks and benefits together.

Getting the most from your medicines

Caring for your diabetes requires attention to detail in many areas, from meal planning to physical activity to monitoring of blood glucose. With everything else to consider, it’s no surprise that some people occasionally forget to take their oral medicines. In fact, research shows that nearly one in three people with Type 2 diabetes who need oral medicines fail to take them daily. Unfortunately, this doubles the likelihood of hospitalizations for heart- or diabetes-related complications.

What should you do if you forget to take your diabetes pill or pills? As a general rule, you can take a missed dose of medicine as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose, you may be advised to skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take a double dose. Taking a missed dose of repaglinide or nateglinide between meals could result in hypoglycemia because these drugs stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. If you miss a dose of acarbose or miglitol, taking it between meals will have little effect, because its action is based on stopping the absorption of carbohydrate after eating. Instead, resume taking it at your next meal.

Treating diabetes is an art grounded in science. Work with your diabetes team to choose and use the oral medicine or combination of oral medicines that works best for your situation. You may want to consider the cost of the drug and the number of times per day you have to take it, as well as side effects and possible interactions with any other drugs you may take. Fortunately, today’s diabetes toolbox is well stocked with options to help you reach your blood glucose targets!

Page    1    2    3    4    Show All    

Also in this article:
to view Oral Diabetes Medicines at a Glance and Effectiveness of Oral Medicines



More articles on Oral Medicines
More articles on Diabetes Basics



Statements and opinions expressed on this Web site are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the publishers or advertisers. The information provided on this Web site should not be construed as medical instruction. Consult appropriate health-care professionals before taking action based on this information.



Cats and Dogs Get Diabetes, Too!
We may not think about it much, but our pets can get diabetes. In fact, diabetes is pretty... Blog

Many Americans Taking Meds That Work Against Each Other
Roughly 75% of older Americans have multiple chronic conditions, and more than 20% of them... Blog

Understanding Your Lab Test Results
Diabetes is a chronic condition that requires an enormous amount of self-care and that can... Article

I've just been diagnosed with gestational diabetes. Will it go away? Get tip

Carbohydrate Restriction: An Option for Diabetes Management
Some people find that decreasing the amount of carbohydrate they eat can help with blood glucose control. Here’s what to know about this approach.

Insulin Patch Pumps: A New Tool for Type 2
Patch pumps are simpler to operate than traditional insulin pumps and may be a good option for some people with Type 2 diabetes who need insulin.

How Much Do You Know About Vitamins?
Learn what these micronutrients can and can’t do for you.

Complete table of contents
Subscription questions