Acarbose, Precose or Prandase is used in non insulin dependant diabetes to lower blood glucose levels.
Acarbose, Precose or Prandase is an alpha glucosidase inhibitor meaning that it inhibits this enzyme which is responsible for the breakdown of carbohydrates in the gastro intestinal tract. The carbohydrates are not broken down into sugars, that is glucose, and thus are not able to be absorbed into the body.
Acarbose, Precose or Prandase is intended as an adjunct to diet, and for maximum effect must be taken with the first bite of the largest meal of the day.
Acarbose, Precose or Prandase can cause gas, bloating, and diarrhea due to the undigested carbohydrates in the bowel.
People with inflammatory bowel disease, ulcers of the colon, intestinal obstruction, or chronic intestinal diseases should be careful due to the undigested carbohydrates left in the bowel. People with any condition that intestinal gas may aggravate, for example hernias, may want to avoid Acarbose, Precose or Prandase.
Acarbose, Precose or Prandase does not cause weight loss.
Acarbose, Precose or Prandase by itself can not cause too low a blood glucose levels - hypoglycemia - but in combination with other diabetic medication can result in this condition.
Drugs that elevate blood glucose levels - thiazide diuretics, furosemide, corticosteroids, phenothiazines, thyroid, estrogen, oral contraceptives, isoniazid - can reduce Acarbose, Precose or Prandase's effect.
Cholestyramine may enhance Acarbose, Precose or Prandase's effectiveness. Antacids do not appear to interact with Acarbose, Precose or Prandase, but they will not have any effect on the gas or bloating.
Diabetes Care 1991;14(8):732
Diabetes Care 1991;17(6):561
Ann Int Med 1994;121:928
Diabetes Res Clin Prac 1991;14:S3
Prac Diabe Supp Nov/Dec 1993 Vol 10 No 6
N Engl J Med 1993;329:977
The relevant product monographs must be regarded as the appropriate sources of prescribing information.