Skip to main content

Tanzeum Side Effects

Generic name: albiglutide

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 25, 2022.

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


Common side effects of Tanzeum include: injection site reaction, diarrhea, and nausea. Other side effects include: vomiting. Continue reading for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

Applies to albiglutide: subcutaneous powder for solution.


Subcutaneous route (Powder for Solution)

Carcinogenicity of albiglutide could not be assessed in rodents, but other glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists have caused thyroid C-cell tumors in rodents at clinically relevant exposures. Human relevance of GLP-1 receptor agonist induced C-cell tumors in rodents has not been determined. It is unknown whether albiglutide causes thyroid C-cell tumors, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), in humans. Albiglutide is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC or in patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2). Counsel patients about the potential risk of MTC with the use of albiglutide and inform them of the symptoms of thyroid tumors (e.g., mass in the neck, dysphagia, dyspnea, persistent hoarseness). Routine monitoring of serum calcitonin or thyroid ultrasound monitoring is of uncertain value for early detection of MTC.

Serious side effects of Tanzeum

Along with its needed effects, albiglutide (the active ingredient contained in Tanzeum) 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 albiglutide:


Incidence not known

  • Anxiety, irritability, or mood changes
  • blurred vision
  • cold sweats
  • confusion
  • difficulty with breathing or swallowing
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • increased hunger
  • shakiness
  • skin itching, rash, or redness
  • slurred speech
  • swelling of the face, throat, or tongue
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Other side effects of Tanzeum

Some side effects of albiglutide 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

  • Body aches or pain
  • cough
  • diarrhea
  • ear congestion
  • loss of voice
  • muscle pain or stiffness
  • pain in the joints
  • pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
  • skin reactions, warmth, or redness at the injection site
  • sneezing
  • stuffy or runny nose

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to albiglutide: subcutaneous powder for injection.


The most commonly reported adverse reactions have included diarrhea, nausea, and injection site reactions which have included rash, erythema, or itching at the injection site.


Very common (10% or more): Diarrhea (13.1%), nausea (11.1%),

Common (1% to 10%): Vomiting, gastroesophageal reflux disease, dyspepsia, constipation

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Appendicitis, acute pancreatitis, intestinal obstruction[Ref]

The incidence of pancreatitis (adjudicated as likely to be related to therapy) in clinical trials was 0.3% compared with 0% for placebo and 0.1% for comparators (e.g., liraglutide, pioglitazone, glimepiride, sitagliptin, and insulin glargine) with or without background antidiabetic therapy (e.g. metformin)

Gastrointestinal events occurred more frequently with this drug than comparators (38% versus 32%). Diarrhea (13% vs 9%), nausea (12% vs 11%), vomiting (5% vs 4%), and constipation (5% vs 4%) were the most commonly reported, and the majority of events occurred within the first 6 months.[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Pruritus, rash, dyspnea

Postmarketing reports: Angioedema[Ref]


Medullary thyroid cancer (MTC) was diagnosed in 1 patient receiving this drug and 1 patient receiving placebo across 8 phase 3 clinical trials; both of these patients had markedly elevated serum calcitonin levels at baseline. MTC has been reported in patients treated with liraglutide, another GLP-1 receptor agonist. The data is insufficient to establish or exclude a causal relationship between MTC and GLP-1 receptor use in humans.[Ref]

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Medullary thyroid cancer[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Injection site reaction (up to 15%)

Common (1% to 10%): Injection site hematoma, erythema, rash, and/or pruritus

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Injection site hypersensitivity and/or hemorrhage[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Hypoglycemia (when used in combination with insulin or sulfonylurea)

Common (1% to 10%): Hypoglycemia (when used as monotherapy in combination with metformin or pioglitazone)

Frequency not reported: Decreased appetite[Ref]


Acute renal failure has been reported and may have been the result of dehydration. Postmarketing reports of acute renal failure and worsening chronic renal failure, sometimes requiring hemodialysis, have been reported. Some of these reports have been in patients without known kidney disease. A majority of patients had experienced nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or dehydration.[Ref]

Frequency not reported: Acute renal failure

Postmarketing reports: Acute renal failure, worsening of chronic renal failure, sometimes requiring hemodialysis[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Back pain (6.7%), arthralgia (6.6%)[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Influenza (5.2%)[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Upper respiratory tract infection (14.2%), cough (6.9%), sinusitis (6.2%)

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


Common (1% to 10%): Atrial fibrillation

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Atrial flutter

Frequency not reported: Increased heart rate[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Increased ALT, gamma glutamyltransferase[Ref]


In a pooled trials, 116 (5.5%) of 2,098 patients exposed to this drug tested positive for anti-albiglutide (the active ingredient contained in Tanzeum) antibodies at any time during the trials. None of these antibodies were shown to neutralize the activity of albiglutide in an in vitro bioassay.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Positive test for anti-albiglutide antibodies[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Tanzeum (albiglutide)." GlaxoSmithKline (2014):

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

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.