Skip to main content

Bydureon Side Effects

Generic name: exenatide

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Sep 3, 2023.

Note: This document contains side effect information about exenatide. Some dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Bydureon.

Applies to exenatide: subcutaneous solution, subcutaneous suspension extended release.


Subcutaneous route (Suspension, Extended Release)

Exenatide extended-release causes an increased incidence in thyroid C-cell tumors at clinically relevant exposures in rats compared to controls. It is unknown whether exenatide extended-release causes thyroid C-cell tumors, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), in humans, as the human relevance of exenatide extended-release-induced rodent thyroid C-cell tumors has not been determined.Exenatide extended-release is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC and in patients with Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2). Counsel patients regarding the potential risk for MTC with the use of exenatide extended-release and inform them of symptoms of thyroid tumors (eg, mass in the neck, dysphagia, dyspnea, persistent hoarseness). Routine monitoring of serum calcitonin or using thyroid ultrasound is of uncertain value for detection of MTC in patients treated with exenatide extended-release

Serious side effects of Bydureon

Along with its needed effects, exenatide (the active ingredient contained in Bydureon) may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking exenatide:

Incidence not known

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking exenatide:

Symptoms of overdose

Other side effects of Bydureon

Some side effects of exenatide may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

Less common

Incidence not known

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to exenatide: subcutaneous powder for injection extended release, subcutaneous solution, subcutaneous suspension extended release.


The most commonly reported side effects have included nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, injection site pruritus, and injection site nodules.[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Generalized pruritus and/or urticaria, macular or papular rash, angioedema, anaphylactic reaction[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Anti-exenatide (the active ingredient contained in Bydureon) antibodies (up to 90%)[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Hypoglycemia (up to 19%)

Common (1% to 10%): Decreased appetite, rapid weight loss (greater than 3.3 lbs/1.5 kg a week), anorexia, hypokalemia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Dehydration (associated with nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Urinary tract infection

Postmarketing reports: Altered renal function, including increased serum creatinine, renal impairment, worsened chronic renal failure or acute renal failure (sometimes requiring hemodialysis), kidney transplant and kidney transplant dysfunction[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Injection-site reactions (up to 17.1%)

Common (1% to 10%): Injection-site pain, injection site pruritus, injection site erythema[Ref]

During clinical trials for the exenatide auto-injector (Bydureon BCISE[R]), injection site nodule was the most commonly reported adverse reaction reported in 10.5% of patients (n=526). Injection site pruritus and injection site erythema were reported in 3.2% and 2.3% of patients, respectively. Injection site nodule was reported as the reason for discontinuation in 0.5% of patients.

Clinical trials comparing immediate-release (Byetta[R]) and extended-release (Bydureon[R]) exenatide have shown that injection-site reactions occurred more frequently in patients treated with extended-release (17.1% vs 12.7%).[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Nausea (up to 34%), diarrhea (up to 13%), vomiting (up to 19%)

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Intestinal obstruction

Common (1% to 10%): Dyspepsia, constipation, gastroesophageal reflux disease, abdominal distension, abdominal pain, upper abdominal pain, abdominal discomfort, toothache, viral gastroenteritis, gastroenteritis

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Ileus, ischemic colitis, gut ischemia

Postmarketing reports: Eructation, flatulence, acute pancreatitis, hemorrhagic and necrotizing pancreatitis sometimes resulting in death[Ref]

In clinical trials with the extended-release auto-injector, acute pancreatitis occurred in 0.4% of patients.[Ref]


Increases in heart rate of up to 4.5 beats per minute have been observed; long-term effects of increases in heart rate have not been established.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Increased heart rate (up to 15%)

Common (1% to 10%): Hypertension[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Hyperhidrosis

Rare (less than 0.1%) Alopecia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Erectile dysfunction[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Joint pain, back pain, arthralgia, pain in extremity, musculoskeletal pain, muscle spasms[Ref]

Nervous system

Common (1% to 10%): Headache, dizziness, diabetic neuropathy

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Dysgeusia

Rare (less than 0.1%): Somnolence[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Depression, insomnia, anxiety[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Nasopharyngitis (up to 19%), upper respiratory tract infection (up to 17%)

Common (1% to 10%): Sinusitis, influenza, cough, oropharyngeal pain[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Fatigue, asthenia, feeling jittery[Ref]


Rare (less than 0.1%): Increased INR with concomitant warfarin therapy, sometimes associated with bleeding

Postmarketing reports: Drug-induced thrombocytopenia[Ref]

Frequently asked questions


1. Product Information. Byetta (exenatide). Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc. 2005.

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. Australian Product Information.

3. Product Information. Bydureon BCise (exenatide). Astra-Zeneca Pharmaceuticals. 2017.

Further information

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

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.