Compare Glucotrol vs. Precose

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

Glucotrol
(glipizide)

Precose
(acarbose)

Lowers blood sugar. Glucotrol (glipizide) is an effective medicine for lowering blood sugar, but it can cause your blood sugar level to be too low so you must always carry some form of sugar with you that can be readily used.Lowers blood sugar. Precose (acarbose) helps lower your post-mealtime blood sugar levels, but it must be taken at the beginning of each main meal in order for it to be most effective.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.29Glucotrol
Reviews for Glucotrol
50%
of people (All ages) say Glucotrol is worth it
32%
say it works well
19%
say it's a big hassle
332 reviews
Have you used Glucotrol (glipizide)?
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Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Dizziness 1%
  • Diarrhea 5%
  • Nervousness 1%
  • Tremor 4%
  • Passing gas 2%
  • Low blood sugar 3%
  • Constipation 3%
  • Nausea 3%
  • Headache 2%
More Glucotrol side effects »
  • Excessive gas 46%
  • Diarrhea 19%
  • Stomach pain 10%
More Precose side effects »
How it works
GlucotrolPrecose
Glucotrol (glipizide) stimulates your body to release insulin and lower blood sugar.Precose (acarbose) stops an enzyme in your body from turning carbohydrates into sugar for energy. As a result, your body will absorb less sugar from the foods that you eat which will lead to lower blood sugar levels.
Type of medication
GlucotrolPrecose
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Pill
  • Extended release pill
  • Pill
Used for
GlucotrolPrecose
Risk factors for serious side effects
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Skipping meals or having inconsistent meal times
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Using other blood sugar-lowering medicine
  • People age 60 or older
  • Those with kidney and/or liver problems
Detailed Glucotrol (glipizide) risks & warnings »
  • Using insulin or other medicines that stimulate insulin release
  • Those with kidney problems
  • Taking multiple medicines together
Detailed Precose (acarbose) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy
Interactions
GlucotrolPrecose
No interactions related info.
  • Has relatively few interactions with other medicines.
Alcohol
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Glucotrol (glipizide).
No alcohol related info.
Food
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Eat regular and well-balanced meals to keep your blood sugar levels normal.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
GlucotrolPrecose
No kidneys and liver related info.
  • Precose (acarbose) is not a recommended treatment option if you have bad kidney function or kidney problems. Your doctor will have you do a blood test to decide if this is the right medicine for you.
Pain
GlucotrolPrecose
No pain related info.
  • Causes side effects usually during the first few weeks of treatment including stomach pain, excessive gas, and diarrhea that will become less bothersome with time.
Weight
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Can cause mild weight gain of 2-3lb.
  • Precose (acarbose) helps control meal-time blood sugar levels without causing weight gain.
Upsides and benefits
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Lowers A1c levels by 1-2%.
  • Glucotrol (glipizide) is an oral medicine so it might be a good alternative for those who don't like injections.
  • Protects your organs and blood vessels by preventing the harmful effects of high blood sugar levels.
  • Okay to use by people with kidney problems.
  • Available as a generic form and is relatively cheap.
  • Precose (acarbose) helps control meal-time blood sugar levels without causing weight gain.
  • When used alone it doesn't normally cause blood sugar levels to be too low unlike other anti-diabetes medicines.
  • Safe to be used in people age 65 or older.
  • Has relatively few interactions with other medicines.
Downsides and risks
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Has a higher risk than other diabetes medicine for causing blood sugar levels to be too low.
  • While taking Glucotrol (glipizide), your blood sugars should be checked 2 to 5 times a week, but less often once you are on a stable dose.
  • Can cause mild weight gain of 2-3lb.
  • Might lose its effectiveness over time.
  • Needs to be taken 30 minutes before a meal for it to be most effective.
  • Not a first choice medicine because it isn't as effective at lowering blood sugar compared to other treatment options.
  • Associated with bothersome side effects like excessive gas and diarrhea.
  • Relatively more expensive than other diabetes medicines.
  • Has to be taken three times a day with each meal.
  • Might cause episodes of low blood sugar when taken together with insulin or medicines that stimulate insulin release.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
GlucotrolPrecose
  • Take the medicine 30 minutes before eating, usually before your first big meal of the day.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Glucotrol (glipizide).
  • Eat regular and well-balanced meals to keep your blood sugar levels normal.
  • Check your blood sugar regularly.
  • Glucotrol (glipizide) can cause dizziness so avoid activities that require coordination until you know how your body can handle the medicine.
  • Take Precose (acarbose) with the first bite of each main meal.
  • Don't take the medicine for the times you have skipped a meal.
  • Causes side effects usually during the first few weeks of treatment including stomach pain, excessive gas, and diarrhea that will become less bothersome with time.
  • You should continue to maintain a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and monitor your blood sugar levels while taking Precose (acarbose).
  • Your doctor will work with you to increase your dose gradually.
  • Carry glucose tablets with you at all times so that you can take them when your blood sugar drops to dangerously low levels. This is more likely to happen if you are also using insulin or a medicine that stimulates insulin release.
Learn more
More about GlucotrolSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Glucotrol (glipizide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about PrecoseSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it