Generic Name: liraglutide (LIR a GLOO tde)
Brand Names: Victoza
What is Victoza?
Victoza is a diabetes medicine that helps control blood sugar levels. It works by increasing the amount of insulin that your body produces.
Victoza is used to treat type 2 diabetes. This medication is not for treating type 1 diabetes.
Victoza may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
You should not use Victoza if you are allergic to liraglutide, or if you have multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 (tumors in your glands), a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer, insulin-dependent diabetes, or if you are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis (call your doctor for treatment with insulin).
Before using Victoza, tell your doctor if you have stomach problems causing slow digestion, kidney or liver disease, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, or if you have ever had pancreatitis, gallstones, or alcoholism.
You should not breast-feed while using Victoza. Never share an injection pen with another person. Sharing injection pens can allow disease such as hepatitis or HIV to pass from one person to another.
Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect while using Victoza, such as swelling or a lump in your throat area, hoarse voice, trouble swallowing, feeling short of breath, severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting, or signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, mouth sores, or easy bruising or bleeding.
Victoza is only part of a complete program of treatment that may also include diet, exercise, weight control, foot care, eye care, dental care, and testing your blood sugar.
Before using Victoza
You should not use Victoza if you are allergic to liraglutide, or if you have:
multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 (tumors in your glands);
a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer;
type 1 diabetes; or
if you are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis (call your doctor for treatment with insulin).
To make sure you can safely use Victoza, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
stomach problems causing slow digestion;
kidney or liver disease;
high blood pressure;
high triglyceride levels in your blood;
a history of pancreatitis;
a history of gallstones; or
a history of alcoholism.
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Victoza will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication. It is not known whether liraglutide passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using Victoza.
See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)
How should I use Victoza?
Victoza comes in a prefilled injection pen. Ask your pharmacist which type of needles are best to use with your pen.
Victoza is injected under the skin. Your care provider will show you the best places on your body to inject Victoza. Do not self-inject this medicine if you do not fully understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of used needles and injection pens.
Victoza is usually given once per day. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. Your dose needs may change if you become ill, have a fever or infection, or if you have surgery or a medical emergency.
You may use Victoza at any time of the day, with or without a meal.
Do not use Victoza if it has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your doctor for a new prescription.
Your blood sugar will need to be checked often, and you may need other blood tests at your doctor's office. Visit your doctor regularly.
Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) can happen to everyone who has diabetes. Symptoms include headache, hunger, sweating, pale skin, irritability, dizziness, feeling shaky, or trouble concentrating. Carry hard candy or glucose tablets with you in case you have low blood sugar. Other sugar sources include fruit juice, crackers, raisins, and non-diet soda. Be sure your family and close friends know how to help you in an emergency.
Victoza is only part of a complete program of treatment that may also include diet, exercise, weight control, foot care, eye care, dental care, and testing your blood sugar. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely. Changing any of these factors can affect your blood sugar levels.
Storing unopened Victoza injection pens: Store in the refrigerator. Do not store near the refrigerator's cooling element.
Storing after your first use: You may keep "in-use" injection pens in the refrigerator or at room temperature. Protect the pens from moisture, heat, and sunlight. Use within 30 days. Remove the needle before storing an injection pen, and keep the cap on the pen when not in use.
Throw away used needles in a puncture-proof container (ask your pharmacist where you can get one and how to dispose of it). Keep this container out of the reach of children and pets.
Do not freeze Victoza, and throw away the medication if it has become frozen.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Victoza overdose may cause severe nausea and vomiting.
What should I avoid?
Never share a Victoza injection pen with another person. Sharing injection pens can allow disease such as hepatitis or HIV to pass from one person to another.
Victoza side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Victoza: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
swelling or a lump in your throat area;
hoarse voice, trouble swallowing, feeling short of breath;
urinating less than usual or not at all;
weakness, confusion, increased thirst, loss of appetite, pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest;
swelling, weight gain, feeling short of breath;
pancreatitis - severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, fast heart rate; or
signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), mouth sores, unusual weakness.
Less serious Victoza side effects may include:
upset stomach, loss of appetite;
cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sinus pain, sore throat;
mild skin rash; or
redness or rash where the medicine was injected.
This is not a complete list of Victoza side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
What other drugs will affect Victoza?
Victoza can make it harder for your body to absorb other medications you take by mouth. Tell your doctor about all medications you take by mouth, especially oral diabetes medications (Glucotrol, Metaglip, Amaryl, Avandaryl, Duetact, DiaBeta, Micronase, Glucovance, and others).
There may be other drugs that can interact with Victoza. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
More about Victoza (liraglutide)
- Other brands: Saxenda
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your pharmacist can provide more information about Victoza.
- Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects.
Copyright 1996-2015 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.01. Revision Date: 2012-08-30, 3:29:22 PM.