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Bydureon (Exenatide Extended-Release Injection (Bydureon) (Pens))

Generic name: Exenatide Extended-Release Injection (Bydureon) (Pens) (ex EN a tide)
Brand name: Bydureon
Drug class: Incretin mimetics

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Feb 3, 2021.


  • This medicine has been shown to cause thyroid cancer in some animals. It is not known if this happens in humans. If thyroid cancer happens, it may be deadly if not found and treated early. Call your doctor right away if you have a neck mass, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or have hoarseness that will not go away.
  • Do not use Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) if you have a health problem called Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2), or if you or a family member have had thyroid cancer.

Uses of Bydureon:

  • It is used to lower blood sugar in patients with high blood sugar (diabetes).

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Bydureon?

  • If you have an allergy to exenatide or any other part of Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)).
  • If you are allergic to Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)); any part of Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)); or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
  • If you have any of these health problems: Acidic blood problem, type 1 diabetes, pancreatitis, or stomach or bowel problems.
  • If you have kidney problems.
  • If you are using insulin.
  • If you are using another drug that has the same drug in it.
  • If the patient is a child. This medicine is not approved for use in children.

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)).

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Bydureon?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) affects you.
  • Wear disease medical alert ID (identification).
  • Do not drive if your blood sugar has been low. There is a greater chance of you having a crash.
  • Check your blood sugar as you have been told by your doctor.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • Birth control taken by mouth may not work as well to prevent pregnancy if taken at the same time as Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). If you are taking birth control by mouth, take it at least 1 hour before taking Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). If you must take your birth control with food, take it with a meal or snack at a time when you do not also take Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)).
  • This medicine may prevent other drugs taken by mouth from getting into the body. If you take other drugs by mouth, you may need to take them at some other time than Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). Talk with your doctor.
  • It may be harder to control blood sugar during times of stress such as fever, infection, injury, or surgery. A change in physical activity, exercise, or diet may also affect blood sugar.
  • Talk with your doctor before you drink alcohol.
  • Do not share with another person even if the needle has been changed. Sharing your tray or pen may pass infections from one person to another. This includes infections you may not know you have.
  • Kidney problems have happened with Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). Some people have needed dialysis or a kidney transplant. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you cannot drink liquids by mouth or if you have upset stomach, throwing up, or diarrhea that does not go away; you need to avoid getting dehydrated. Contact your doctor to find out what to do. Dehydration may lead to new or worse kidney problems.
  • Very bad skin problems have happened where the shot was given. Sometimes surgery was needed for these skin problems. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you are 65 or older, use Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) with care. You could have more side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan on getting pregnant, or are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks to you and the baby.

How is this medicine (Bydureon) best taken?

Use Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • It is given as a shot into the fatty part of the skin on the top of the thigh, belly area, or upper arm.
  • If you will be giving yourself the shot, your doctor or nurse will teach you how to give the shot.
  • Do not use if solution changes color.
  • Keep taking Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
  • Do not mix Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) in the same syringe with insulin.
  • If you are also using insulin, you may inject Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) and the insulin in the same area of the body but not right next to each other.
  • Wash your hands before and after use.
  • Follow the diet and workout plan that your doctor told you about.
  • Throw away needles in a needle/sharp disposal box. Do not reuse needles or other items. When the box is full, follow all local rules for getting rid of it. Talk with a doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • If stored in a refrigerator, let Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) come to room temperature before using it. Do not heat Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)).
  • This medicine needs to be mixed before use. Follow how to mix as you were told by the doctor.
  • Use right away after mixing.
  • Take the same day each week.
  • Move site where you give the shot each time.
  • Take with or without food.
  • This medicine will look cloudy and milky when ready to use. Do not use if the solution looks clear or has lumps in it. Do not use if powder is stuck to the sides of the container.
  • Do not use if the solution is leaking or has particles.
  • Each container is for one use only. Use right after opening. Throw away any part of the opened container after the dose is given.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • If it is 3 or more days to the time of your next dose, take the missed dose as soon as you think about it and go back to your normal day.
  • If it is 1 or 2 days to the time of your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal day.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in how much urine is passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
  • Signs of gallbladder problems like pain in the upper right belly area, right shoulder area, or between the shoulder blades; yellow skin or eyes; fever with chills; bloating; or very upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Dizziness or passing out.
  • Area that feels hard, blisters, dark scab, lumps, open wound, pain, swelling, or other very bad skin irritation where the shot was given.
  • Low blood sugar can happen. The chance may be raised when Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) is used with other drugs for diabetes. Signs may be dizziness, headache, feeling sleepy or weak, shaking, fast heartbeat, confusion, hunger, or sweating. Call your doctor right away if you have any of these signs. Follow what you have been told to do for low blood sugar. This may include taking glucose tablets, liquid glucose, or some fruit juices.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly pancreas problems (pancreatitis) have happened with Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)). Call your doctor right away if you have very bad stomach pain, very bad back pain, or very upset stomach or throwing up.

What are some other side effects of Bydureon?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Diarrhea or constipation.
  • Heartburn.
  • Headache.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Small bump where the shot is given.
  • Itching where the shot is given.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out Bydureon?

  • Do not use if it has been frozen.
  • Store in the original container to protect from light.
  • Store in a refrigerator. Do not freeze.
  • You may store unopened containers at room temperature. If you store at room temperature, throw away any part not used after 28 days.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.

Consumer information use

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
  • This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)) is refilled. If you have any questions about Bydureon (exenatide extended-release injection (bydureon) (pens)), please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.