Compare glyburide vs. Actos

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

Diabeta
(glyburide)

Actos
(pioglitazone)

Lowers blood sugar. Diabeta (glyburide) is a good oral anti-diabetic medicine, but can cause hypoglycemia or low blood sugar.Lowers blood sugar. Actos (pioglitazone) can improve blood sugar control but is not a top choice since it has a lot of side effects.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.42glyburide
Reviews for glyburide
45%
of people (All ages) say glyburide is worth it
34%
say it works well
21%
say it's a big hassle
110 reviews
Have you used Diabeta (glyburide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Actos
42%
+3% better vs. glyburide
30%
+4% better vs. glyburide
21%
Same vs. glyburide
175 reviews
Have you used Actos (pioglitazone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
glyburideActos
  • Nausea and heartburn 2%
  • Skin allergies 2%
More glyburide side effects »
  • Swelling 11%
  • Low blood sugar 8%
  • Colds and flu 4%
  • Headache 2%
  • Heart failure 2%
  • Sinus infection 1%
  • Back pain 1%
  • Muscle pain 2%
More Actos side effects »
How it works
glyburideActos
Diabeta (glyburide) stimulates your body to release insulin and lower blood sugar.Actos (pioglitazone) is a thiazolidinedione that improves your body's ability to use insulin to lower your blood sugar.
Type of medication
glyburideActos
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
glyburideActos
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for
glyburideActos
Risk factors for serious side effects
glyburideActos
  • Over age 65
  • Kidney problems
  • Use of other blood sugar lowering medicines
  • Alcohol
  • Intense physical activity
Detailed Diabeta (glyburide) risks & warnings »
  • Heart failure
  • Current liver problems
  • History of bladder cancer
  • Women
Detailed Actos (pioglitazone) 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.

Alcohol
glyburideActos
  • Try to avoid drinking alcohol while on Diabeta (glyburide).
No alcohol related info.
Food
glyburideActos
  • Eat well-balanced meals to avoid low blood sugar.
  • Take once a day with or without food.
Kidneys and liver
glyburideActos
  • Not ideal for elderly or those with poor kidney function.
  • If you've had liver problems or damage in the past, talk to your doctor before starting Actos (pioglitazone), since there's a small chance that it can hurt your liver. Tell your doctor about any stomach pain that don't go away, dark urine, or yellowing of eyes/skin. Your doctor will check your liver regularly.
Weight
glyburideActos
  • Can cause weight gain, dizziness, or stomach upset.
  • Can cause weight gain (about 2 to 3 pounds).
  • Can cause weight gain, headache, and swelling from fluid build-up.
  • Can cause weight gain.
Upsides and benefits
glyburideActos
  • Available as an oral tablet.
  • Lowers your A1c (average blood sugar over time) up to 2%.
  • Available in generic version.
  • Available in single pill combination with other anti-diabetic medicines.
  • Improves sugar control and lowers A1c levels by around 1%.
  • Easily taken by mouth as a once a day pill.
  • Prevents the harmful effects of high sugar levels on your organs.
  • Rarely causes low blood sugar.
  • Lower the risk of heart attack or stroke.
Downsides and risks
glyburideActos
  • More likely to cause hypoglycemia or low blood sugar than other types of oral anti-diabetics.
  • You will have to check your blood sugar often when you first start taking it.
  • Can cause weight gain (about 2 to 3 pounds).
  • Not ideal for elderly or those with poor kidney function.
  • May not work as well for those with severe diabetes and when pancreas cannot produce insulin.
  • May take several weeks to lower blood sugar.
  • Can cause weight gain.
  • People with heart failure or history of bladder cancer shouldn't use this medicine.
  • Some people might get fluid accumulation (edema), from minor ankle swelling to fluid in lungs that makes it hard to breathe.
  • Raises the risk of bone fractures, especially for people who already have a risk for fractures.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
glyburideActos
  • Check your blood sugar regularly.
  • Eat well-balanced meals to avoid low blood sugar.
  • Works best if you take it 30 minutes before first main meal of the day.
  • Can cause weight gain, dizziness, or stomach upset.
  • Try to avoid drinking alcohol while on Diabeta (glyburide).
  • Take once a day with or without food.
  • May need several weeks to see full effect on blood sugar control.
  • Can cause weight gain, headache, and swelling from fluid build-up.
  • Tell your doctor about any shortness of breath, heart troubles, or unusual swelling.
  • Not recommended for patients with a history of heart failure or bladder cancer.
  • Check your blood sugar regularly.
Learn more
More about glyburideSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Diabeta (glyburide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about ActosSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Actos (pioglitazone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it