What is Trulicity Uses, warnings & interactions
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Trulicity is a prescription drug used in combination with diet and exercise to treat type 2 diabetes in adults. It is not indicated to treat patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus or diabetic ketoacidosis. Trulicity is a glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist that helps reduce your blood glucose levels. The active ingredient in Trulicity is dulaglutide which stimulates insulin secretion and reduces glucagon release, depending on your blood sugar level.
- Treatment of type 2 diabetes
- Prefilled single-dose pen
What is Trulicity used for?
Trulicity (dulaglutide) is a prescription medication that is manufactured by Eli Lilly and Company. There is no generic version of Trulicity available.
Trulicity is a GLP-1 receptor agonist that is FDA-approved to:
- Improve blood glucose control when used along with diet and exercise in adults with type 2 diabetes.
- To reduce the risk of serious cardiovascular events (heart attack) in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus who have known cardiovascular disease or multiple cardiovascular risk factors.
How does Trulicity work?
Trulicity is a glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist. GLP-1 is a hormone that binds and activates GLP-1 receptors. Activating these receptors lowers blood sugar by stimulating insulin secretion and reducing glucagon release. These are done in a glucose-dependent manner, meaning if your blood sugar is high, your body will secrete more insulin and less glucagon. Trulicity can also delay the time it takes food to empty out of your stomach after eating. This helps reduce the rate glucose circulates in your bloodstream.
What are the most commonly prescribed doses of Trulicity?
- 0.75 mg/0.5 ml single-dose pen
- 1.5 mg/0.5 ml single-dose pen
- 3 mg/0.5 ml single-dose pen
- 4.5 mg/0.5 ml single-dose pen
How to take Trulicity
- Read the Instructions for Use that come with your Trulicity pen.
- Your doctor should show you how to use Trulicity before you use it for the first time.
- Use Trulicity exactly as your doctor prescribes it.
- Inject Trulicity under the skin of your stomach (abdomen), thigh, or upper arm. Do not inject Trulicity into a muscle or vein.
- Use Trulicity once a week on the same day each week at any time of day. You can change the day you give the injection if your last dose was given at least 3 days before.
- If you miss a weekly dose of Trulicity, take the missed dose immediately if there are at least 3 days until your next scheduled dose. If there are less than 3 days until your next dose, wait and take the next dose on your regularly scheduled day.
- You can take Trulicity with or without food.
- Do not mix insulin and Trulicity in the same injection.
- You may give an injection of Trulicity and insulin in the same area of the body, but not right next to one another.
- Rotate your injection site with each weekly injection.
- Discuss with your doctor how to recognize and treat hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar).
- Store Trulicity in its original carton in the refrigerator at 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) away from light. You can keep each single-dose pen at room temperature (59°F to 86°F) for up to 14 days. Do not freeze Trulicity or use it if it’s been frozen.
Trulicity is contraindicated in patients with:
- A personal or family history of medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) or in patients with multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2).
- Serious allergic reaction to dulaglutide or any of the product components.
- Trulicity may cause thyroid tumors or a type of thyroid cancer called medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC).
- Inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) has been reported in clinical studies. Discontinue Trulicity immediately if pancreatitis is suspected and do not restart it if pancreatitis is confirmed.
- Increased risk of diabetic retinopathy complications. If you have a history of diabetic retinopathy, you should be monitored for the progression of this condition.
- Your risk of hypoglycemia is increased if Trulicity is used along with an insulin secretagogue (sulfonylurea) or insulin. A lower dose of the secretagogue or insulin may be necessary.
- Increased risk of acute kidney injury. Your renal function should be monitored if you have renal impairment and severe adverse gastrointestinal reactions.
- Serious hypersensitivity reactions (anaphylaxis, angioedema) have been reported with Trulicity. If this reaction occurs, discontinue using Trulicity immediately and seek medical advice.
- Increased risk of acute gallbladder disease.
- Trulicity use may be associated with severe gastrointestinal adverse reactions. Trulicity is not recommended in patients with severe gastrointestinal disease.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Trulicity should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. It is not known if Trulicity is present in breast milk.
Trulicity drug interactions
When Trulicity is taken with other medications, they may interact and change how those medications work. They may also make some side effects more likely and severe. Make sure your doctor is aware of all prescription and over-the-counter medications you are taking. Some common drug interactions of Trulicity include:
- Increased risk of hypoglycemia if Trulicity is used in combination with insulin secretagogues (sulfonylureas) or insulin.
- Trulicity may delay gastric emptying so it can impact the absorption of oral medications taken along with it. Trulicity should be used with caution in patients with gastroparesis.
Side effects of Trulicity
The most common side effects of Trulicity reported in ≥5% of patients include:
- Abdominal pain
- Decreased appetite
- Weight loss
Some possible serious side effects of Trulicity include:
- Increased risk of thyroid tumors
- Diabetic retinopathy complications
- Severe gastrointestinal reactions
- Hypoglycemia when used along with insulin secretagogues or insulin
- Acute kidney injury
- Increased heart rate
- Acute gallbladder disease
- Hypersensitivity reactions
You can report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.
There are other type 2 diabetes medications that your healthcare professional can prescribe if Trulicity is not right for you. They will vary by factors such as side effects and costs. Some FDA-approved alternatives to Trulicity include:
- Victoza (liraglutide)
- Ozempic (semaglutide)
- Januvia (sitagliptin)
- Byetta (exenatide)
- Bydureon (exenatide ER)
- Glucophage (metformin)
Is Trulicity better than Ozempic?
Trulicity (semaglutide) and Ozempic (semaglutide) both belong to the same drug class, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists. They are both given as a weekly injection under the skin. Trulicity and Ozempic are both indicated to help improve blood glucose control in adults with type 2 diabetes and lower the risk of cardiovascular events in those with type 2 diabetes and heart disease. They both cause similar side effects as well.
While they both have been shown effective in treating type 2 diabetes, the SUSTAIN 7 clinical trial compared the two medications and found Ozempic to be more effective than Trulicity. Ozempic reduced blood glucose levels more than Trulicity and caused more weight loss.
How long does Trulicity stay in the system?
With an elimination half-life of approximately 5 days, Trulicity will remain in your bloodstream for around 25 days after your last dose.
Does Trulicity cause withdrawal?
Do not stop using Trulicity without talking to your healthcare provider. Your blood sugar level may increase after you stop using it.
How do I store Trulicity?
Store Trulicity in its original carton in the refrigerator at 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C) away from light. You can keep each single-dose pen at room temperature (59°F to 86°F) for up to 14 days. Do not freeze Trulicity or use it if it’s been frozen.
How long does it take for Trulicity to start working?
Your blood glucose levels should start to decline within the first 4 weeks of starting Trulicity.
Trulicity research & news
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.