Compare Onglyza vs. metformin

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

Onglyza
(saxagliptin)

Glucophage
(metformin)

Lowers blood sugar. Onglyza (saxagliptin) can cause heart failure unlike other medicines that work just like it.Lowers blood sugar. Glucophage (metformin) is the first choice medicine to control your blood sugar and lower the risk of death from diabetes, although a few people may not tolerate the stomach side effects.
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Coupons for Onglyza
Best available price for 30 (5mg) tablets of onglyza
Coupons for metformin
Best available price for 60 (500mg) tablets of metformin
Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Onglyza (saxagliptin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for metformin
65%
-65% worse vs. Onglyza
46%
-46% worse vs. Onglyza
16%
+16% better vs. Onglyza
938 reviews
Have you used Glucophage (metformin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
Onglyzametformin
  • Urinary tract infection 1%
  • Headache 1%
  • Swelling in arms and legs 4%
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) 2%
  • Allergic reactions 2%
More Onglyza side effects »
  • Diarrhea 41%
  • Nausea/vomiting 18%
  • Gas 6%
  • Weakness 3%
  • Indigestion 3%
  • Stomach pain 1%
  • Headache 1%
More metformin side effects »
How it works
Onglyzametformin
Onglyza (saxagliptin) is an anti-diabetic drug. It lowers your blood sugar by enhancing your body's release of insulin.Glucophage (metformin) is an anti-diabetic drug. It lowers the amount of sugar your body makes or absorbs, and allows your body use the existing insulin better.
Type of medication
Onglyzametformin
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
Onglyzametformin
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Extended release pill
  • Liquid
Used for
Onglyzametformin
Risk factors for serious side effects
Onglyzametformin
  • Alcoholism
  • Elevated triglycerides
  • History of pancreatitis
  • Gallstones
  • History of heart failure
Detailed Onglyza (saxagliptin) risks & warnings »
  • Kidney problems
  • Liver problems
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Using contrast dye for procedures
  • Surgery
Detailed Glucophage (metformin) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

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

Interactions
Onglyzametformin
  • Certain drugs may interact with Onglyza (saxagliptin), let your doctor know all the medications you are currently taking and before starting Onglyza (saxagliptin).
No interactions related info.
Alcohol
Onglyzametformin
No alcohol related info.
  • Limit or avoid alcohol when taking this medicine.
  • Excessive or chronic alcohol use can increase the risk of a dangerous side effect.
Food
Onglyzametformin
No food related info.
  • Always take it with food to lessen stomach upset.
Kidneys and liver
Onglyzametformin
  • May be a good option for those with bad liver function.
  • Glucophage (metformin) can cause this rare life-threatening condition. Your doctor will check your kidneys and liver before you start. Symptoms include deep and rapid breathing, nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain. This is a medical emergency and you should get help right away. You're more likely to get this if you already have kidney problems. Glucophage (metformin) should be stopped 48 hours before and after surgery or any imaging procedure needing contrast dye.
  • Usually not a good choice for people with kidney problems. Your doctor will tell you if Glucophage (metformin) is right for you to take.
Weight
Onglyzametformin
  • Does not cause weight gain.
  • Doesn't cause weight gain.
Upsides and benefits
Onglyzametformin
  • DRUG-NAME is an oral blood sugar lowering medicine. It's a good option if you don't like injections.
  • Does not cause weight gain.
  • May be a good option for those with bad liver function.
  • Does not cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) when taken by itself.
  • Improves sugar control and lowers A1c levels as much as 2%.
  • One of the few diabetes medicines that lowers the risk of death from diabetes-related complications.
  • Doesn't cause weight gain.
  • Rarely causes low blood sugar.
Downsides and risks
Onglyzametformin
  • Typically not first-choice treatment for diabetes.
  • Only lowers A1C (average blood sugar over time) by ~0.5%.
  • Risk for heart failure has not been seen in other medicines that work just like it.
  • May be more expensive than other anti-diabetic medicines.
  • Often causes stomach upset, like diarrhea, nausea, gas, or stomach cramping.
  • Usually not a good choice for people with kidney problems. Your doctor will tell you if Glucophage (metformin) is right for you to take.
  • Excessive or chronic alcohol use can increase the risk of a dangerous side effect.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
Onglyzametformin
  • Is taken once daily.
  • Certain drugs may interact with Onglyza (saxagliptin), let your doctor know all the medications you are currently taking and before starting Onglyza (saxagliptin).
  • Stop taking Onglyza (saxagliptin) and see your doctor immediately if you experience severe stomach pain that does not go away, as this may indicate dangerous inflammation of the pancreas.
  • Maintain a consistent diet and exercise regimen to prevent low blood sugar or high blood sugar.
  • Can cause upset stomach with nausea and especially diarrhea in the first couple of weeks.
  • Always take it with food to lessen stomach upset.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Limit or avoid alcohol when taking this medicine.
  • Tell your doctor about any deep or rapid breathing, or persistent nausea, vomiting, and stomach pain.
  • Check your blood sugar regularly.
Learn more
More about OnglyzaSide effectsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Onglyza (saxagliptin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about metforminSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Glucophage (metformin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it