Glimepiride: Side Effects, Dosage, Uses, and More


What is the Glimepiride drug used for?

Glimepiride is one of the oral medication that belongs to the sulfonylureas .

This class of drugs works by lowering blood sugar levels in the body by stimulating the body to produce insulin.

Usually this drug is used to control high blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes . This drug can also be used with other diabetes medications .

Controlling your blood sugar levels can help prevent kidney damage, blindness, nerve problems, and sexual function problems. Appropriate diabetes control can also reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke.

In order to reduce blood sugar levels in the body, usually you also have to go on a healthy diet and regular exercise. These drugs are included in prescription drugs so you can only buy them at the pharmacy if they include a prescription from a doctor.

How to use Glimepiride?

As with other drugs, there are procedures for using glimepiride that you must pay attention to when using glimepiride, including:

  • The most appropriate time to consume glimepiride is right after breakfast as directed by your doctor, usually once a day.
  • The dose of glimepiride given to you is the dose determined based on your health condition and your therapeutic response.
  • Usually, the doctor will give the lowest dose as the initial dose to then determine the right dose gradually.
  • If you already use other antidiabetic drugs (such as chlorpropamide), follow the instructions given by your doctor carefully in order to stop your previous antidiabetic medication and start using glimepiride.
  • Colesevelam can reduce Glimepiride absorption. If you use colesevelam, use Glimepiride at least 4 hours before using it.
  • To get the maximum benefit, use this medicine at the same time every day.
  • Don’t stop using this medicine without the doctor’s approval, even if you feel fine.
  • You should tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or even worsens (your blood sugar levels rise or fall dramatically).

How to store Glimepiride?

There are procedures you should pay attention to storing this medicine properly, as follows.

  • The best way to store glimepiride is to keep it at room temperature.
  • Avoid direct light or sunlight.
  • Do not store this medicine in a humid place.
  • Do not also store it in the bathroom.
  • Do not store and freeze in the freezer.
  • Other brands of this drug may have different storage rules.
  • Observe the storage instructions on the product packaging or ask your pharmacist.
  • Keep all medicines out of the reach of children and pets.

Discard this product when it has expired or if it is no longer needed. Do not flush medicine in the toilet or in the sewer unless instructed.

Do not mix this medicinal waste with ordinary household waste for environmental health. Consult the pharmacist or an officer from your local waste disposal agency about how to safely dispose of your product.


The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. ALWAYS consult your doctor or pharmacist before starting treatment.

What is the dose of Glimepiride for adults?

Adult dose of type 2 diabetes

  • Initial dose: 1-2 mg orally once a day.
  • Treatment dose: Dosage can be increased to 1-2 mg every 1-2 weeks, depending on your response to treatment.
  • Glimepiride should be given after breakfast or your first meal every day
  • The recommended maximum dose is 8 mg per day.

Elderly type 2 diabetes

  • Initial dose: 1 mg orally once a day.
  • Treatment dose: Dosage can be increased to 1-2 mg every 1-2 weeks, depending on your response to treatment.

What is the dose of Glimepiride for children?

The dosage of the use of this drug for children has not been determined. If you want to give this medicine to children, make sure you consult your doctor first.

In what dosages is Glimepiride available?

Glimepiride is available in the following dosages.

Tablet, Oral: 1 mg, 2 mg, 4 mg

Side effects

What side effects can be experienced due to Glimepiride?

As with other medicines, glimepiride also has side effects that use drugs that must be considered. These side effects can be classified as mild to serious. Side effects of using glimepiride that are relatively mild are:

  • drowsiness, headache, fatigue
  • mild nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea
  • increased sensitivity to sunlight
  • mild itching or skin rash

Meanwhile, quite serious side effects that might occur include the following.

  • Signs of allergic reactions such as hives, difficulty breathing; swollen face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Severe, itchy, red, or irritated skin rashes
  • Pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding, fever, the body feels weak for no apparent reason
  • Feeling bait or tickling
  • Respiratory problems
  • The body feels like to faint
  • Urine and stools are dark in color
  • Abdominal pain in the upper part, mild fever, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • Nausea, vomiting, no appetite, feeling restless, confused, hallucinations, muscle aches or weakness, and / or convulsions.

Not everyone experiences the following side effects. There may be some side effects not mentioned above. If you have concerns about certain side effects that you experience after using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Prevention & Warnings

What should be known before using Glimepiride?

Before you decide to use this medicine, there are a few things you should know about. These include warning and preventing the use of glimepiride, including:

  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you have an allergy to glimepiride, other drugs, or other ingredients found in glimepiride. Ask the pharmacist for a list of these ingredients.
  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription drugs, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are using or plan to use.
  • Tell your doctor if you suffer from or have suffered from G6PD deficiency (a hereditary condition that causes faster red blood cell breakdown or hemolytic anemia); if you have hormonal abnormalities related to adrenal, pituitary, or thyroid gland; or if you suffer from heart, kidney or liver disease.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. If you are going to be pregnant and are currently using this medicine, contact your doctor immediately.
  • If you are going to undergo an operation, such as a dental surgery or other major surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using glimepiride.
  • Ask your doctor whether it is safe to use alcohol while under the influence of this drug. Because, alcohol can increase the risk of side effects of drug use. Alcohol consumption while using this drug can also cause flushing , red headaches, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, weakness, blurred vision, mental confusion, sweating, choking, difficulty breathing, and anxiety.
  • Avoid unnecessary or prolonged sun exposure and wear protective clothing, sunglasses and sunblock. This medicine can make your skin sensitive to sunlight.
  • Ask your doctor what to do if you are sick, have an infection or fever, experience unusual stress, or are injured. This condition can affect blood sugar and the dosage of medication that you need.

Is Glimepiride safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women?

There is no adequate research on the risks of using this drug in pregnant or nursing women. Always consult your doctor to consider the potential benefits and risks before using this medicine. This drug is included in the category C pregnancy risk according to the US Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) or equivalent to the Food and Drug Supervisory Agency (BPOM) in Indonesia. The following are references to pregnancy risk categories according to the FDA:

  •      A: No risk,
  •      B: No risk in some studies,
  •      C: Maybe it’s risky,
  •      D: There is positive evidence of risk,
  •      X: Contraindications,
  •      N: Not known


What medicines might interact with glimepiride?

Drug interactions can change the performance of your medication or increase the risk of serious side effects. Not all possible drug interactions are listed in this article.

Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription / nonprescription medicines and herbal products) and consult your doctor or pharmacist. Do not start, stop or change the dose of any drug without the doctor’s approval.

You are more prone to suffer from hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) if you use glimepiride with other drugs that can lower your blood sugar, including:

  • anticoagulants (‘blood thinners’) such as warfarin (Coumadin);
  • aspirin dan nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) lain seperti ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) dan naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn);
  • beta blockers such as atenolol (Tenormin), labetalol (Normodyne), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol XL), nadolol (Corgard), and propranolol (Inderal);
  • chloramphenicol;
  • clarithromycin (Biaxin);
  • disopyramide (Norpace);
  • diuretic (‘water pill’);
  • fluconazole (Diflucan);
  • fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem);
  • hormone replacement therapy and hormonal contraception (pregnancy control pills, patches, rings, implants, and injections);
  • insulin or other drugs to treat high blood sugar or diabetes;
  • isoniazid (INH);
  • MAO inhibitors seperti isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), dan tranylcypromine (Parnate);
  • asthma and flu medicines;
  • medicine for mental disorders and nausea;
  • miconazole (Monistat);
  • niacin;
  • steroid oral seperti dexamethasone (Decadron, Dexone), methylprednisolone (Medrol), dan prednisone (Deltasone);
  • phenytoin (Dilantin);
  • probenecid (Benemid);
  • quinolone and fluoroquinolone antibiotics include cinoxacin (Cinobac), ciprofloxacin (Cipro), enoxacin (Penetrex), gatifloxacin (Tequin), levofloxacin (Levaquin), lomefloxacin (Maxaquin), moxifloxacin (Aveloxin, noralxin), noral , ofloxacin (Floxin), sparfloxacin (Zagam), trovafloxacin dan alatrofloxacin combination (Trovan);
  • rifampin (Rifadin);
  • anti pain salicylate such as choline magnesium trisalicylate, choline salicylate (Arthropan), diflunisal (Dolobid), magnesium salicylate (Doan’s, others), and salsalate (Argesic, Disalcid, Salgesic); sulfa antibiotics such as co-trimoxazole (Bactrim, Septra);
  • sulfasalazine (Azulfidine);
  • exenatide (Byetta)
  • probenecid (Benemid)

Can food or alcohol interact with glimepiride?

Certain medicines should not be used when eating or when eating certain foods because drug interactions can occur. Consuming alcohol or tobacco with certain drugs can also cause interactions to occur. Discuss your use of drugs with food, alcohol, or tobacco with your health care provider.

What health conditions can interact with glimepiride?

Other health problems in your body can affect the use of this drug. Tell your doctor if you have other health problems when you want to use glimepiride, including:

  • alcohol poisoning
  • the adrenal glands are less active
  • pituitary gland is less active
  • malnutrition condition
  • weak physical condition
  • other conditions that cause low blood sugar levels. The reason is, patients with this condition are more vulnerable or have a higher risk of experiencing low blood sugar.
  • diabetic ketoacidosis (keto in the blood)
  • a history of Sulfonamide allergies (antibiotics or stomach medications, such as sulfamethoxazole, sulfasalazine, sulfisoxazole, Azulfidine®, Bactrim®, or Septra®)
  • type 1 diabetes. If you have this condition, glimepiride should not be used by patients.
  • fever
  • infection
  • operation
  • Trauma. This condition can cause temporary problems with blood sugar control and your doctor may treat you with temporary insulin
  • Glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency (enzyme problem) deficiency. Can cause hemolytic anemia (blood disorders) in patients with this condition
  • heart disease. Use this medicine with caution. Can worsen this condition
  • Kidney illness
  • liver disease. Use this medicine with caution. Effects can increase due to slowing down the disposal of drugs from the body.


What should I do in an emergency or overdose?

In cases of emergency or overdose, contact the local emergency services provider (112) or immediately to the nearest hospital emergency department.

Symptoms of overdose from the use of glimepiride include symptoms of hypoglycemia such as:

  • convulsions
  • loss of consciousness

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you forget one dose of this medicine, take the dose as soon as possible. But if it turns out when you want to take a missed dose, the time has shown to take the next dose, skip the forgotten dose and return to the usual dosage schedule.

Don’t double the dose because a double dose won’t guarantee whether you can feel the benefits of glimepiride faster than not doubling it. In addition, you do not know whether doubling the dose will not increase the risk of side effects from using the drug or not.

Always consult your doctor about the dosage of drug use, because the doctor who checks your condition certainly knows more about the use of doses that are more appropriate and in accordance with your health conditions.


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