Highlights for dapagliflozin
- Dapagliflozin oral tablet is available as a brand-name drug. It’s not available in a generic version. Brand name: Farxiga.
- Dapagliflozin only comes as a tablet you take by mouth.
- Dapagliflozin is used with diet and exercise to treat type 2 diabetes.
- Dehydration warning: This drug may cause you to become dehydrated. Symptoms of dehydration include:
- feeling faint
- weakness, especially when you stand up
- Genital infections warning: Use of this drug can increase your risk of genital infections. You’re at a greater risk if you have a history of these infections or if you’re an uncircumcised male.
- Bladder cancer warning: Don’t take this drug if you have bladder cancer. This drug may make it worse. This drug may also increase your risk of bladder cancer. Tell your doctor right away if you’re taking this drug and have any of the following symptoms:
- blood or red color in your urine
- pain while you urinate
- Ketoacidosis warning: This drug may cause diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a serious complication of diabetes. It happens when your body makes high levels of the blood acids called ketones. This condition should be treated with insulin. If you develop ketoacidosis, your doctor may have you stop taking dapagliflozin temporarily or permanently.
What is dapagliflozin?
Dapagliflozin is a prescription drug. It comes as an oral tablet.
This drug is only available as the brand-name drug Farxiga. It isn’t available as a generic drug.
Dapagliflozin may be used as part of a combination therapy. That means you need to take it with other drugs.
Why it's used
Dapagliflozin can help lower your blood sugar level when combined with lifestyle changes (such as diet, exercise, and quitting smoking) and sometimes other medications. Lowering your blood sugar level helps control your type 2 diabetes.
How it works
Dapagliflozin belongs to a class of drugs called sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions.
Dapagliflozin lowers your blood sugar level by causing your kidneys to get rid of excess sugar through your urine.
Dapagliflozin side effects
Dapagliflozin oral tablet doesn’t cause drowsiness, but it can cause other side effects.
More common side effects
The more common side effects that can occur with dapagliflozin include:
- Infections, such as:
- yeast infections of the vagina
- yeast infections of the penis
- infections of the urinary tract
- changes in urination, such as:
- urge to urinate often
- urge to urinate at night
- stuffy or runny nose and sore throat
If these effects are mild, they may disappear within a few days or a couple of weeks. If they’re more severe or don’t disappear, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
Serious side effects
Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Call 911 if your symptoms feel life-threatening or if you think you’re having a medical emergency. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:
- Dehydration. Symptoms may include:
- feeling faint
- weakness, especially when you stand up
- Yeast infection. Symptoms in women may include:
- vaginal odor
- white or yellowish vaginal discharge
- vaginal itching
- Symptoms in men may include:
- redness, itching, or swelling of the penis
- rash of the penis
- foul-smelling discharge from the penis
- pain in the skin around the penis
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Symptoms may include:
- feeling jittery
- fast heartbeat
- Kidney problems. Symptoms may include:
- reduced urination
- swelling in your legs or ankles
- Increased cholesterol levels. If you already have high cholesterol, your doctor will monitor your cholesterol closely.
- Ketoacidosis (increased ketones in blood or urine). Symptoms may include:
- pain in the stomach area
- trouble breathing
- Serious urinary tract infections. Symptoms may include:
- burning sensation when urinating
- the need to urinate more frequently
- the need to urinate right away
- pain in the lower part of the stomach
- blood in the urine
Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we can not guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
Dapagliflozin may interact with other medications
Dapagliflozinoral tablet can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.
To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, vitamins, or herbs you’re taking. To find out how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
Examples of drugs that can cause interactions with dapagliflozin are listed below.
Insulin or drugs that cause the release of insulin
When you take dapagliflozin with these drugs, your blood sugar level can get too low, causing hypoglycemia. Your doctor may lower your dosage of other diabetes medications if you start taking dapagliflozin.
Diuretics (water pills)
When you take dapagliflozin with these drugs, you may be at higher risk of having low blood pressure.
Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we can not guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
This drug comes with several warnings.
This drug can cause a severe allergic reaction. Symptoms may include:
- trouble breathing
- swelling of your throat or tongue
If you develop these symptoms, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room.
Don’t take this drug again if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to it. Taking it again could be fatal (cause death).
Alcohol interaction warning
Avoid drinking too much alcohol while taking dapagliflozin. Alcohol can change your blood sugar levels and increase your risk of low blood sugar. Talk to your doctor about how much alcohol is safe for you to drink.
Warnings for people with certain health conditions
For people with kidney disease: Dapagliflozin could cause kidney damage. If your kidney function decreases, your doctor may have you stop taking this drug. Don’t take this medication if you have severe kidney disease or if you’re on dialysis.
For people with bladder cancer: Some people who have taken dapagliflozin have developed bladder cancer. There isn’t enough information to know if this drug is the cause. It also isn’t known if this drug affects existing bladder cancer. Until more is known, don’t take this drug if you have bladder cancer.
For people with high cholesterol: This medication can increase your cholesterol levels. If you already have high cholesterol, your doctor will monitor your cholesterol levels closely.
Warnings for other groups
For pregnant women: There haven’t been enough studies done in humans to be certain how this drug might a pregnancy. Use dapagliflozin only if the potential benefit outweighs the potential risks.
If you’re pregnant, talk with your doctor about the best way to control your blood sugar while you’re pregnant. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment with this drug.
For women who are breastfeeding: It isn’t known if this drug passes through breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you’ll take this drug or breastfeed.
For seniors: People aged 65 years or older who take this drug may be at an increased risk of low blood pressure, low blood pressure when standing, dizziness, fainting, dehydration, and kidney problems.
How to take dapagliflozin
All possible dosages and forms may not be included here. Your dose, form, and how often you take it will depend on:
- your age
- the condition being treated
- the severity of your condition
- other medical conditions you have
- how you react to the first dose
Dosage for type 2 diabetes
- Form: oral tablet
- Strengths: 5 mg, 10 mg
Adult dosage (ages 18 to 64 years)
- Typical starting dosage: 5 mg taken once per day in the morning.
- Dosage increases: Your doctor may increase your dosage to 10 mg per day if your blood sugar level is not controlled with the 5-mg dose.
Child dosage (ages 0 to 17 years)
Dosage for people younger than 18 years old hasn’t been established.
Senior dosage (ages 65 years and older)
Your body may process this drug more slowly. Your doctor may start you on a lower dosage so that too much of this drug doesn’t build up in your body. Too much of the drug in your body can be dangerous.
Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we can not guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Take as directed
Dapagliflozinoral tablet is used for long-term treatment. It comes with serious risks if you don’t take it as prescribed.
If you don't take it at all: Your blood sugar levels may not be controlled.
If you stop taking it suddenly: If your condition improved while taking the medication regularly and you stop taking this drug suddenly, your symptoms of type 2 diabetes may return.
If you don't take it on schedule: You may not get the full benefit of this medication.
If you take too much: Your blood sugar levels may drop too low. If you take too much of this drug, call your doctor or go to the nearest emergency room right away.
What to do if you miss a dose: If you forget to take your dose, take it as soon as you remember, unless you remember just a few hours before your next dose. Then only take one dose. Never try to catch up by taking two doses at once. This could result in dangerous side effects.
How to tell if the drug is working: Your blood sugar level should decrease and stay in the normal range.
Important considerations for taking dapagliflozin
Keep these considerations in mind if your doctor prescribes dapagliflozin for you.
- Store this drug at a temperature between 68°F and 77°F (20°C and 25°C).
- When travelling, this medication can be stored in temperatures between59°F and 86°F (15°Cand30°C).
- Keep this drug away from light and high temperature.
- Don’t store this medication in moist or damp areas, such as bathrooms.
A prescription for this medication is refillable. You should not need a new prescription for this medication to be refilled. Your doctor will write the number of refills authorized on your prescription.
When traveling with your medication:
- Always carry your medication with you. When flying, never put it into a checked bag. Keep it in your carry-on bag.
- Don’t worry about airport X-ray machines. They can’t harm your medication.
- You may need to show airport staff the pharmacy label for your medication. Always carry the original prescription-labeled container with you.
- Don’t put this medication in your car’s glove compartment or leave it in the car. Be sure to avoid doing this when the weather is very hot or very cold.
You may need to check your blood sugar level at home. To do this, you may need to learn how to use a blood sugar level monitoring system.
Your doctor may do tests during treatment to check your:
- blood sugar level
- hemoglobin A1c level. This shows how well controlled your blood sugar levels have been over the past 3 months.
- cholesterol level
- electrolyte level
- red blood cell count
- kidney function
Your doctor may also monitor your blood pressure and check for signs of a genital infection.
Not every pharmacy stocks this drug. When filling your prescription, be sure to call ahead to make sure your pharmacy carries it.
Many insurance companies require a prior authorization for this drug. This means your doctor will need to get approval from your insurance company before your insurance company will pay for the prescription.
Are there any alternatives?
There are other drugs available to treat your condition. Some may be more suitable for you than others. Talk to your doctor about possible alternatives.
Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained here in is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.