Does Trulicity need to be refrigerated?

Trulicity is a brand-name prescription drug used to treat type 2 diabetes. It should be stored in the fridge between 36°F – 46°F (2°C – 8°C) before using the medication for the first time and can be stored at room temperature for up to 14 days. Trulicity is sensitive to high and low temperatures. Learn more about the storage conditions for Trulicity and how to store Trulicity before and after you start using it.

What is Trulicity (dulaglutide)?

Trulicity (dulaglutide) is a prescription drug used to treat type 2 diabetes, manufactured by Eli Lilly and Company. It is an FDA-approved non-insulin treatment for high blood glucose levels that comes in a single-dose pen or a prefilled syringe and is administered by injection.

It may also be given to reduce the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events (such as a stroke or heart attack) occurring in adults with type 2 diabetes who may be at a high risk of cardiovascular disease. or who already have cardiovascular disease.

Trulicity is a safe and effective diabetes medication when it is taken as directed by your healthcare provider. When Trulicity is taken weekly as directed by your healthcare provider, along with exercise and diet, this medication may help lower blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes.

The active ingredient in Trulicity is dulaglutide. Dulaglutide is in the drug class known as glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1 receptor agonist). GLP-1 is a hormone released from the gut in response to food and helps to regulate glucose metabolism by stimulating insulin release from the pancreas and slowing gastric emptying.

Talk to your healthcare provider about the potential risks and benefits of Trulicity before starting treatment.

How does Trulicity work?

Trulicity works to help manage blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes. The medication also helps lower the risks of heart problems in people with heart disease and diabetes. Trulicity attaches to certain receptors on the cells of your pancreas, which tells the pancreas to release insulin when the body’s blood sugar level is high. Trulicity helps your pancreas release more insulin by attaching to the cells and lowers your blood sugar.

Trulicity also increases the time it takes for food to move through your stomach and keeps your blood sugar level from spiking after eating.

This medication will also block glucagon and lower your blood sugar. Glucagon is a hormone that tells your liver to break down sugar and release it into your blood.

Trulicity (Dulaglutide) vs Victoza (Liraglutide)

The AWARD-6 study compared once-weekly Trulicity with once-daily Victoza (Liraglutide) used by people with type 2 diabetes. The study suggests that both drugs are similar in terms of Hb A1c reduction, and people taking Victoza experienced slightly more weight loss. Nausea side effect rates were experienced similarly with both drugs.

Trulicity storage requirements

Trulicity storage conditions

BEFORE FIRST USE: Trulicity should be stored in the refrigerator (between 36°F to 46°F or 2°C to 8°C) until the first time you use it.

AFTER FIRST USE: After you have used Trulicity pen or Trulicity prefilled syringe for the first time, it can remain stored in the refrigerator or kept at room temperature (between 59°F to 86°F or 15°C to 30°C) for up to 14 days. This allowable 14-day room temperature exposure may be one single 14-day exposure, or it can be broken up into multiple exposures. There is no limit to the number of room temperature exposures as long as the total time does not exceed 14 days (336 hours).

It is important to note that Trulicity is sensitive to extreme temperatures. If the prefilled syringe or pen is exposed to temperatures higher than 86°F (30°C), it can go bad and no longer be safe.

Do not freeze Trulicity. Trulicity can become damaged if it is exposed to extreme temperatures. It should not be stored in a place that is too hot or too cold. Avoid storing Trulicity in the bathroom or near a sink, as it may be exposed to moisture.

It is important to follow the storage instructions provided by your healthcare provider or pharmacist. Do not use Trulicity if it has been left at room temperature for more than 14 days, frozen, or the expiration date has passed. You will need to use a new pen or prefilled syringe. If you have any questions about how to store Trulicity, you should contact your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

How long can Trulicity be refrigerated?

Trulicity can be stored in the refrigerator between 36°F – 46°F (2°C – 8°C) until its expiration date.

Can Trulicity stay out of the fridge?

After first use, Trulicity can be stored out of the fridge at room temperature (between 59°F – 86°F or 15°C – 30°C) for up to 14 days.

If Trulicity has been stored at room temperature for more than 14 days, it should be discarded.

Do not store your Trulicity pens or prefilled syringes in the car. Always keep Trulicity away from the light and away from heat. Similar to other diabetes medications like VictozaOzempic, and many other injectable drugs, Trulicity is sensitive to high and low temperatures.

What if I left Trulicity out of the fridge overnight or forgot to put Trulicity in the fridge?

If you left Trulicity out of the fridge overnight at room temperature, it could be returned to the fridge and used as usual. Trulicity can be left at room temperature for up to 14 days, so as long as you return it to the fridge in less than 14 days, you will be able to continue using it as long as the total time stored at room temperature does not exceed 14 days (336 hours).

What happens to Trulicity if it is not refrigerated?

According to the manufacturer, it is not recommended to use Trulicity if it is stored at room temperature for longer than 14 days (336 hours).

Can Trulicity be frozen?

Do not freeze Trulicity or store the pens or prefilled syringes directly next to the cooling element in your refrigerator. Do not take Trulicity if it is frozen.

Once frozen, the solution in Trulicity will break down and not regain its original efficacy. Trulicity is not safe for use after being frozen. Even if the solution has thawed, you should throw it away and get a new prefilled syringe or pen.

Does Trulicity expire?

Trulicity expires on the expiration (EXP) date printed on the label or carton. As well, it cannot be used after 14 days when stored at room temperature.

How do I travel with Trulicity?

If you need to take Trulicity with you when you are away from home, you can store it at room temperature for up to 14 days. However, it is important to protect the medication from light and heat during this time. If the Trulicity has been stored at room temperature for more than 14 days, it should be discarded.

How do I keep my Trulicity cold while traveling?

Store Trulicity at 36°F – 46°F or 2 – 8°C when transporting or traveling, where possible. The pen may be kept at room temperature (below 86°F or 30°C) for up to a total of 14 days. When traveling by air, place the pen in the carry-on baggage.

The manufacturer, Eli Lilly and Company, does not test, market, or sell coolers to keep Trulicity cold for long periods of time and does not recommend any of them. If a travel storage cooler is used, it is important to remember that Trulicity should not touch ice or frozen gel packs.

How to dispose of the Trulicity pen and prefilled syringe?

Put your Trulicity injection pen and needle in an FDA-cleared sharps container right away after use. Your Trulicity pen and needle should not be thrown away in the household trash.

A household container can be used if you don’t have a specific FDA-cleared sharps container. If you are using your own container, it should be created from heavy-duty plastic and can be securely closed in a stable upright, and leak-proof container. The lid should be tight and puncture-resistant, whereby sharps are not able to come back out. It should be labeled properly to warn people of hazardous materials inside the container.

When your container for sharps disposal is nearly full, you should follow the disposal guidelines in your community. There are no special instructions for disposing of the Trulicity pen or prefilled syringe.

What are the side effects of Trulicity?

The most common side effects of Trulicity are:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach (abdominal) pain
  • Decreased appetite
  • Indigestion
  • Fatigue

Rare but serious side effects of Trulicity can include:

  • Low blood glucose (hypoglycemia)
  • Inflammation of your pancreas (pancreatitis)
  • Kidney injury
  • Serious allergic reactions
  • Severe stomach problems
  • Changes in vision
  • Gallbladder problems

You should talk to your doctor about the potential side effects of Trulicity before starting treatment.

When should you not use Trulicity?

Do not use Trulicity If:

  • You have Type 1 Diabetes
  • You or anyone in your family ever had a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC)
  • You have Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2)
  • You are allergic to dulaglutide or other ingredients in Trulicity

Tell your physician about all of your medical conditions, including if you currently have or previously have had:

  • Kidney problems
  • Gallbladder problems
  • Pancreatitis
  • Liver problems
  • A history of alcoholism
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
  • Any other medical conditions

Speak with your healthcare provider if:

  • You have other medical conditions, including problems with your pancreas, liver, kidneys, or stomach, or you have a history of diabetic retinopathy
  • You are taking any other diabetes medications, such as insulin or sulfonylureas
  • You are currently pregnant, or you are planning to become pregnant, or you are breastfeeding or  are planning to breastfeed
  • You are taking any other prescription drugs or over-the-counter medications, herbs or vitamins

What doses of Trulicity are available?

Trulicity is available as a pen and prefilled syringe in the doses 0.75 mg, 1.5 mg, 3 mg and 4.5 mg.

The recommended starting dose of Trulicity is a weekly dose of 0.75 mg injected subcutaneously, Increased to 1.5 mg once weekly for additional glycemic control.

If additional glycemic control is needed, the dose is increased in 1.5 mg increments after at least 4 weeks of taking the current dosage.

Your healthcare provider may want you to use one or more medications in addition to Trulicity, such as sulfonylurea, metformin, thiazolidinedione or insulin.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

If you have missed a dose of your Trulicity, inject the missed dose once you remember. If it is nearly time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and inject the next dose at your regular time. Do not inject a dose that is double the amount of Trulicity to make up for a dose that was missed.

How to use Trulicity

Your healthcare provider can help you choose the best injection site for your body. It is recommended to use different spots in the injection site area every time you inject Trulicity. Suggested injection site areas are your upper arm, abdomen, or thigh.

What is the best time of day to inject Trulicity?

Trulicity is taken once weekly. On the day of the week that you usually take Trulicity, you can take your weekly dose at any time of the day, with or without food.

Should Trulicity be injected cold?

You can inject Trulicity cold, but it is more likely to sting if injected cold. you can allow Trulicity to warm up to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before injecting it, which will be more pleasant than injecting it cold.

Foods to avoid with Trulicity

It is recommended to avoid foods and drinks that are high-fat, sugary, and calorie-dense.

You should also limit the amount of alcohol you drink, as it may cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) for those with diabetes.

RELATED: What foods to avoid with Trulicity

Medically reviewed

A medical professional has reviewed this article.

Jamie Winn, PharmD
Jamie Winn, PharmD

Jamie Winn, PharmD

Medical Writer & Reviewer

Jamie Winn, PharmD

Medical Writer & Reviewer

Dr. Jamie Winn received his Doctor of Pharmacy in 2002 from the University of South Carolina College of Pharmacy, Columbia, SC. Jamie is a medical reviewer for NiceRx.

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Sources (4)

  1. Trulicity official website - Storage and Disposal

  2. Healthline -Trulicity Dosage: What You Need to Know

  3. Lilly - How should Trulicity® (dulaglutide) be stored during transport and travel?

  4. Lilly - Instructions for Use TRULICITY®

The content on this website is intended for information purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice. The information on this website should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always speak to your doctor regarding the risks and benefits of any treatment.
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