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Pioglitazone (brand name: Actos) is an anti-diabetic drug in the glitazones class.

Pioglitazone does not directly stimulate insulin production; instead, it affects the insulin-synthetic function of the pancreas. Pioglitazone also reduces insulin resistance in the liver and peripheral tissues; increases the expense of insulin-dependent glucose; decreases withdrawal of glucose from the liver; and reduces the quantity of glucose, insulin and hemoglobin A1c in the bloodstream.


Pioglitazone is used for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in monotherapy and combination therapy with sulfonylurea, metformin, or insulin when diet and exercise plus the single agent have no effect in glycemic control.

Pioglitazone is also indicated as an adjunct to diet and exercise therapy in patients with type 2 diabetes.


The initial dose is 15mg once a day with or without food.

The drugs is supplied in 15mg, 30mg and 45mg form.


  • hypersensitivity to Pioglitazone, thiazolidinediones or any of components of its pharmaceutical forms
  • type 1 diabetes
  • ketoacidosis
  • acute diseases of the liver
  • pregnancy
  • lactation
  • pediatric use in patients under 18 years of age (there are no data about safety and efficiency of Pioglitazone in this group of patients)

Side effects[]

Side effects may include:

  • hypoglycemia
  • edema
  • upper respiratory tract infection
  • anemia
  • headache
  • sinusitis
  • myalgia
  • tooth disorder
  • diabetes mellitus aggravated
  • pharyngitis
  • reduction of hemoglobin, hematocrit and bilirubin
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