Compare Byetta vs. Januvia

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Byetta
(Exenatide)

Januvia
(Sitagliptin)

Lowers your blood sugar. Byetta (Exenatide) helps lower blood sugar for people with diabetes and causes weight loss, but it has to be given by injection and many people have upset stomach.Lowers blood sugar. Januvia (Sitagliptin) is a good add-on treatment if your blood sugar is still too high, but you don't want to use an injectable medicine.
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Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Byetta (Exenatide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Januvia (Sitagliptin)
44%
-6% worse vs. Byetta (Exenatide)
34%
-16% worse vs. Byetta (Exenatide)
17%
-17% worse vs. Byetta (Exenatide)
143 reviews
Have you used Januvia (Sitagliptin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
ByettaJanuvia
  • Low blood sugar 6%
  • Nausea 26%
  • Vomiting 14%
  • Diarrhea 10%
  • Headache 10%
  • Constipation 8%
  • Dizziness 3%
More Byetta side effects »
  • Common cold 2%
  • Diarrhea 1%
More Januvia side effects »
How it works
ByettaJanuvia
Byetta (Exenatide) is a medication for diabetes. It stimulates your body to produce and release more insulin, lower the sugar hormone (glucagon), and slow down digestion.Januvia (Sitagliptin) is an anti-diabetic drug. It helps your body release more insulin in order to lower blood sugar.
Type of medication
ByettaJanuvia
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
ByettaJanuvia
  • Injection
  • Pill
Used for
ByettaJanuvia
Risk factors for serious side effects
ByettaJanuvia
        • Severe renal impairment
        • End-stage renal disease
        • Severe gastrointestinal disease
        • Gastroparesis
          Detailed Byetta (Exenatide) risks & warnings »
              Detailed Januvia (Sitagliptin) risks & warnings »
              Pregnancy

              Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

              Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

              Interactions
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Because Byetta (Exenatide) can interact with antibiotics and birth control pills, you can't take it until one hour after these medications.
              No interactions related info.
              Food
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Eat regular, balanced meals to avoid low blood sugar.
              No food related info.
              Kidneys and liver
              ByettaJanuvia
              • If you have severe kidney or liver problems, you should not take Byetta (Exenatide). Talk to your doctor about testing your kidneys before starting Byetta (Exenatide). People taking medications that are damaging to kidneys such as ACE inhibitors, NSAIDs or diuretics in addition to Byetta (Exenatide) may notice nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.
              No kidneys and liver related info.
              Pain
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Using Byetta (Exenatide) has been associated with stomach pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. If you have severe gastrointestinal disease such as Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis, you should talk to your doctor about using a different medication for diabetes. You should not use Byetta (Exenatide) if you have gastroparesis, a condition that causes slow or irregular digestion. Gastroparesis can be common for people that have had uncontrolled diabetes for a while.
              No pain related info.
              Weight
              ByettaJanuvia
              No weight related info.
              • Unlike some diabetes medicines, it's unlikely to cause weight gain and low blood sugar.
              Upsides and benefits
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Lowers A1c levels by 1% (A1c measures your average blood sugar over time.)
              • Prevents the harmful effects of high sugar levels on your organs.
              • Has a lower chance of causing low blood sugar than medications like glyburide or insulin.
              • Can lower your appetite by making you feel full. Some people also lose weight when taking Byetta (Exenatide).
              • Byetta (Exenatide) is not a replacement for diabetes pills, but you may be able to use it alone without the need for pills.
              • The injectable “pen” has easy to use doses which you may find more convenient than other types of injections.
              • Oral blood sugar-lowering medicine.
              • Lowers A1c levels by 0.5-0.8%. (Hemoglobin A1c measures your average blood sugar over time.)
              • Prevents the harmful effects of high sugar levels on your organs and blood vessels.
              • Uses the hormones naturally produced by your body to affect how sugar is processed.
              • Unlike some diabetes medicines, it's unlikely to cause weight gain and low blood sugar.
              • You don't have to check your blood sugar every day with this medicine.
              Downsides and risks
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Only lowers A1c levels by 1%, which may not be enough to get your blood sugar in the safe range.
              • Byetta (Exenatide) must be injected twice a day.
              • Up to 40% of people taking Byetta (Exenatide) have upset stomach and side effects like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, or indigestion.
              • Because Byetta (Exenatide) can interact with antibiotics and birth control pills, you can't take it until one hour after these medications.
              • Other diabetes medications work as well and are cheaper.
              • Not as strong as other diabetes medicines. Your doctor might add it to your blood sugar-lowering regimen if your sugar levels are still too high.
              • Likely expensive since there's no generic version available.
              • Some people might get frequent throat infections or nasal congestion.
              Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
              ByettaJanuvia
              • Store in the refrigerator until opening. Do not freeze.
              • Give injections in your belly, thighs, or upper arm within an hour of your two main meals of the day (separate doses by 6 or more hours).
              • Change the needle and prime the pen every time you inject.
              • It’s not safe to share this medication with other people, even if you change the needle.
              • Don’t mix with insulin; give separate injections. Can be given at the same time as insulin, but in different injection areas.
              • Eat regular, balanced meals to avoid low blood sugar.
              • It's best to check your blood sugar at least once a day using a home blood sugar monitor to make sure your medication is working and is safe. Some people may need to test more often, ask your doctor.
              • Can cause headache and cold-like symptoms.
              • Tell your doctor about persistent stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, or loss of appetite.
              • Can be expensive depending on insurance coverage.
              • Check your blood sugar regularly.
              Learn more
              More about ByettaSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
              Have you used Byetta (Exenatide)?
              Worth itNot sureNot worth it
              More about JanuviaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
              Have you used Januvia (Sitagliptin)?
              Worth itNot sureNot worth it