There are an estimated 29 million people in the US living with diabetes, with most cases involving patients with type II diabetes according to the CDC. Individuals develop diabetes when the body is unable to produce or use insulin, a naturally occurring hormone that regulates blood sugar levels. The risk for diabetes increases when patients are overweight, physically inactive, and have a history of cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol, or family members with diabetes.
The management of type II diabetes can be difficult for some patients that have other conditions such as high blood pressure or obesity, which can complicate treatment options. One of the most difficult parts about treating patients with most diabetes medications available is that the effectiveness of such treatments relies on patient’s adherence to a healthy diet and exercise. However, new medications that combine two active ingredients are making it easier for patients with other related medical conditions to manage type II diabetes.
New Combination Diabetes Drugs
Glyxambi New Diabetes Medication
Some of the newest treatments available to treat type II diabetes contain a combination of two drugs that are designed help patients achieve glycemic control. Among one of the latest medications that combine two mechanisms of action to control type II diabetes is Glyxambi, an oral medication that contains empagliflozin and linagliptin. Empagliflozin belongs to a class of drugs called sodium glucose co-transporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors, which work by reducing the amount of glucose in the blood and absorption in the kidneys so that it is passed through urine. The other active ingredient in Glyxambi, linagliptin, a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor, works by inhibiting an enzyme, DPP-4, that inactivates a hormone in the gut called incretins. The incretins in the body causes the pancreas to produce more insulin and stops the liver from producing glucose. By inhibiting DPP-4 from breaking down incretins, Glyxambi helps regulate blood glucose levels to a normal range, especially after meals when type II diabetes patients require it the most.
Synjardy Newly Approved Diabetes Drug
Another new combination diabetes drug that came on the market in 2015 is called Synjardy. Synjardy is also a pill and contains a combination of empagliflozin (just like the SGLT2 inhibitor in Glyxambi) and metformin, a biguanide drug that has been prescribed alone or along with other diabetes medications for decades. Metformin works by suppressing glucose production in the liver while empagliflozin blocks the reabsorption of glucose into the bloodstream in the kidneys. Together these two medications have a more powerful effect on blood sugar levels.
If you are already taking more than one diabetes medication, ask your doctor about an oral combination drug like Glyxambi or Synjardy. These newer drugs can be more expensive, but the manufacturers often provide patient assistance that can significantly lower the monthly cost. Glyxambi is about $100 per month more expensive than Synjardy, but HelpRx offers a discount coupon for Glyxambi that can save you as much as 75% in local pharmacies. Search our site for discounts on the latest diabetes medications.