Compare Invokana vs. Actos

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

Invokana
(canagliflozin)

Actos
(pioglitazone)

Lowers blood sugar. Invokana (canagliflozin) can be used together with other diabetes medicines to help lower your blood sugar, but it can be expensive because it's brand name.Lowers blood sugar. Actos (Pioglitazone) is a last-choice blood sugar-lowering medicine since it's only moderately effective but has a lot of undesirable side effects.
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Coupons for Invokana
Best available price for 30 (300mg) tablets of canagliflozin
Coupons for Actos
Best available price for 30 (30mg) tablets of pioglitazone
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
5.52Invokana
Reviews for Invokana (canagliflozin)
67%
of people (All ages) say Invokana (canagliflozin) is worth it
56%
say it works well
19%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Invokana (canagliflozin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Actos (pioglitazone)
42%
-25% worse vs. Invokana (canagliflozin)
30%
-26% worse vs. Invokana (canagliflozin)
21%
-2% worse vs. Invokana (canagliflozin)
175 reviews
Have you used Actos (pioglitazone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
InvokanaActos
  • Yeast infection in women 8%
  • Urinary tract infections 2%
  • Increased urination 4%
  • Yeast infection in men 3%
  • Thirst 3%
  • Vaginal itching 2%
  • Constipation 1%
  • Abdominal pain 1%
More Invokana side effects »
  • Swelling due to excess fluid 11%
  • Low blood sugar 8%
  • Ear, nose, or throat infection 4%
  • Headache 2%
  • Cardiac failure 2%
  • Back pain 1%
  • Sinus inflammation 1%
  • Muscle pain 2%
More Actos side effects »
How it works
InvokanaActos
Invokana (canagliflozin) is an anti-diabetes medication. It lowers blood sugar by causing your body to get rid of sugar in your urine.Actos (Pioglitazone) is an anti-diabetic drug. It improves your body's ability to use insulin to lower your blood sugar.
Type of medication
InvokanaActos
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
InvokanaActos
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for
InvokanaActos
Risk factors for serious side effects
InvokanaActos
  • History of amputations 
  • Peripheral vascular disease (narrowed blood vessels)
  • Nerve problems
  • Diabetic foot ulcers 
  • History of kidney damage
Detailed Invokana (canagliflozin) risks & warnings »
  • Heart failure diagnosis
  • Current liver problems
  • Female
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.

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
InvokanaActos
  • Avoid if you are a heavy drinker of alcohol.
No alcohol related info.
Food
InvokanaActos
  • You only have to take Invokana (canagliflozin) once a day before meals.
  • Take once daily before your first meal of the day.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
InvokanaActos
  • Not for people with severe kidney problems.
No kidneys and liver related info.
Pain
InvokanaActos
  • Rarely, Invokana (canagliflozin) can hurt the kidneys. This is more likely to happen if you already have kidney damage, heart failure, or take certain medicines for blood pressure or anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs). Invokana (canagliflozin) can also lower your blood pressure since it makes you urinate more. Your doctor will check your kidneys by blood tests regularly, and might ask you to change how you take Invokana (canagliflozin). Make sure to stay hydrated to prevent low blood pressure and kidney problems.
No pain related info.
Weight
InvokanaActos
No weight related info.
  • More likely to cause weight gain (2 to 6 pounds or more) compared to other blood sugar-lowering medicines.
  • Can cause weight gain, headache, and fluid retention.
Upsides and benefits
InvokanaActos
  • Lowers A1C (blood sugar) levels by 1%.
  • You only have to take Invokana (canagliflozin) once a day before meals.
  • Less likely to cause low blood sugar than other diabetes medicines.
  • Also available as a combination drug with metformin (Invokamet).
  • Oral blood sugar-lowering medicine.
  • Lowers A1c levels by around 1%. (Hemoglobin A1c measures your average blood sugar over time.)
  • Prevents the harmful effects of high sugar levels on your organs and blood vessels.
  • Rarely causes low blood sugar.
Downsides and risks
InvokanaActos
  • You're more likely to have broken bones, yeast infections and urinary tract infections with Invokana (canagliflozin).
  • There's a rare but serious risk of leg and foot amputations with Invokana (canagliflozin). Talk to your doctor if you develop new pain or infections in your feet.
  • Not for people with severe kidney problems.
  • Can raise your cholesterol.
  • Avoid if you are a heavy drinker of alcohol.
  • May take several weeks to lower blood sugar.
  • You have to check your blood sugar regularly with this medicine.
  • Has more side effects than similar medicines, so it's usually not the first choice for new Type 2 diabetes patients.
  • More likely to cause weight gain (2 to 6 pounds or more) compared to other blood sugar-lowering medicines.
  • Up to 1 in 10 people might get fluid retention (edema), ranging from mild ankle swelling to severe swelling in the lungs that makes it hard to breathe. People with severe congestive heart failure shouldn't use Actos.
  • Raises the risk of bone fractures, especially for people who already have a risk for fractures.
  • Slightly raises the risk of bladder cancer.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
InvokanaActos
  • Take once daily before your first meal of the day.
  • Invokana (canagliflozin) can cause you to urinate more, so be sure to stay hydrated.
  • Can cause genital yeast infections in females and males.
  • Can cause urinary tract infections (UTI).
  • Can cause low blood sugar, so make sure to check your blood sugar if you don't feel well.
  • You should continue to exercise regularly, eat a healthy diet, and take your other diabetes medicines along with Invokana (canagliflozin).
  • Takes several weeks to see full effect on blood sugar control.
  • Can cause weight gain, headache, and fluid retention.
  • Tell your doctor about any mental confusion, persistent abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing of eyes/skin, or easy bruising.
  • Not recommended for patients with certain heart problems.
  • Check your blood sugar regularly.
Learn more
More about InvokanaSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Invokana (canagliflozin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about ActosSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Actos (pioglitazone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it