What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking this medication if you have:
- Kidney problems, including kidney failure (renal failure)
- Liver problems, including liver failure or cirrhosis
- Adrenal insufficiency or adrenal fatigue
- Glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency (G6PD deficiency)
- Pituitary gland problems
- Any allergies, including allergies to sulfa drugs, foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you:
- Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Amaryl and Pregnancy)
- Are breastfeeding
- Will be having surgery.
Tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Glimepiride for more information on this topic, including information on who should not take the drug.)
How Does It Work?Glimepiride is part of a class of diabetes medications known as sulfonylureas. A sulfonylurea, such as glimepiride, helps the pancreas to produce more insulin. It also helps body's cells to respond better to insulin. As a result, blood sugar levels decrease.
EffectsIn studies looking at the effects of glimepiride, people who took it decreased their hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) by 2 percent compared to people who did not take glimepiride. HbA1c is a test used to measure long-term blood sugar control in people with diabetes. Normal HbA1c levels are usually less than 6 percent in people without diabetes; people with diabetes usually have higher HbA1c results.
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 glimepiride, it may be possible to decrease the chances for developing these diabetes complications.