Generic Name: rosiglitazone (ROE-si-GLI-ta-zone)
Brand Name: Avandia

Thiazolidinedione antidiabetics such as Avandia may cause or worsen heart failure in some patients. Tell your doctor if you have a history of heart failure. Avandia should not be used to treat patients who have heart failure with symptoms, or moderate to severe heart failure. You will be monitored for signs of heart failure when you start Avandia and if your dose increases. Contact your doctor at once if you develop symptoms of heart failure (eg, swelling of the hands, ankles, legs, or feet; shortness of breath; sudden unexplained weight gain). Your doctor may need to stop your medicine or change your dose.


Avandia is used for:

Treating type 2 diabetes. It is used along with diet and exercise. It may be used alone or with other antidiabetic medicines.

Avandia is a thiazolidinedione antidiabetic. It lowers blood sugar by making the cells of the body more sensitive to the insulin that you naturally produce.

Do NOT use Avandia if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Avandia
  • you have heart failure with symptoms or moderate to severe heart failure
  • you have type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis (a severe problem associated with diabetes)
  • you are using insulin

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Slideshow: 2014 Update - First Time Brand-to-Generic Switches

Before using Avandia:

Some medical conditions may interact with Avandia. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have a history of liver problems or abnormal liver function tests, diabetic ketoacidosis, a stroke, heart problems (eg, congestive heart failure, a heart attack), a certain type of diabetic eye disease (macular edema), or other eye or vision problems
  • if you have anemia, or fluid retention or swelling problems (edema)
  • if you take medicines for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart failure, or for prevention of heart disease or a stroke
  • if you have taken a medicine called troglitazone and have had liver problems, including jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Avandia. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Insulin because the risk of certain heart problems (eg, a heart attack, heart failure) may be increased
  • Other antidiabetic medicines (eg, glipizide) because the risk of low blood sugar may be increased
  • Rifamycins (eg, rifampin) because it may decrease Avandia's effectiveness, resulting in high blood sugar
  • Gemfibrozil because it may increase the risk of Avandia's side effects
  • Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin) because their effectiveness may be decreased or the risk of their side effects may be increased by Avandia

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Avandia may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Avandia:

Use Avandia as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Avandia comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get Avandia refilled.
  • Take Avandia by mouth with or without food.
  • Continue to take Avandia even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses. Taking Avandia at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
  • If you miss a dose of Avandia, take it as soon as possible. If it almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Avandia.

Important safety information:

  • Avandia may cause dizziness. This effect may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Take Avandia with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Check with your doctor before you drink alcohol.
  • Proper diet and exercise are important for best results with Avandia. Follow the diet and exercise program given to you by your health care provider.
  • Carry an ID card at all times that says you have diabetes. Check your blood sugar levels as directed by your doctor. If they are often higher than they should be and you take Avandia exactly as prescribed, tell your doctor.
  • Avandia may increase the risk of a heart attack. Seek immediate medical attention if you have chest pain or pressure; pain in the arms, back, neck, jaw, or stomach; shortness of breath; cold sweats; severe dizziness or fainting; or severe nausea or vomiting.
  • It may be harder to control your blood sugar during times of stress such as fever, infection, injury, or surgery. Talk with your doctor about how to control your blood sugar if any of these occur. Do not change the dose of your medicine without checking with your doctor.
  • Avandia does not usually cause low blood sugar. Low blood sugar may be more likely to occur if you skip a meal, exercise heavily, or drink alcohol. It may also be more likely if you take Avandia along with certain other medicines for diabetes (eg, sulfonylureas, insulin). Low blood sugar may make you anxious, sweaty, weak, dizzy, drowsy, or faint. It may also make your heart beat faster; make your vision change; give you a headache, chills, or tremors; or make you more hungry. It is a good idea to carry a reliable source of glucose (eg, tablets or gel) to treat low blood sugar. If this is not available, you should eat or drink a quick source of sugar like table sugar, honey, candy, orange juice, or non-diet soda. This will raise your blood sugar level quickly. Tell your doctor right away if this happens. To prevent low blood sugar, eat meals at the same time each day and do not skip meals.
  • Avandia may cause ovulation in women who have not reached menopause but do not ovulate. To avoid pregnancy, be sure to use effective birth control while using Avandia.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take Avandia before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • An increased incidence of bone fracture has been reported in women who take Avandia. Tell your doctor if you have a history of bone fracture, low calcium intake, or weak bones (eg, osteoporosis). Tell your doctor right away if you experience any unusual bone pain, especially in the hand, foot, or upper arm.
  • Have eye exams as you have been told by your doctor.
  • Lab tests may be performed while you take Avandia. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Avandia with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially the risk of heart failure.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Avandia while you are pregnant. You will also need to talk about the best way to control your diabetes during pregnancy. It is not known if Avandia is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Avandia.

Possible side effects of Avandia:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Cold-like symptoms; headache.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing or swallowing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, throat, or tongue; unusual hoarseness); blurred vision or other vision changes; fast heartbeat; light-headedness; numbness of an arm or leg; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; severe headache, stomach pain, or vomiting; symptoms of heart failure (eg, shortness of breath; sudden, unexplained weight gain; swelling of the hands, ankles, legs, or feet); symptoms of liver problems (eg, dark urine; yellowing of the skin or eyes; unexplained nausea, vomiting, or loss of appetite; stomach pain); symptoms of low blood sugar (eg, anxiety, increased sweating, dizziness or drowsiness, headache, chills, tremors, increased hunger); unusual bone pain (especially in the hand, foot, or upper arm); unusual tiredness or weakness.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of Avandia:

Store Avandia at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store Avandia in the bathroom. Keep Avandia out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Avandia, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Avandia is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take Avandia or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about Avandia. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Avandia. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using Avandia.

Issue Date: December 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.4.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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