Compare Prandin vs. Precose

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

Prandin
(repaglinide)

Precose
(acarbose)

Lowers blood sugar. Prandin (repaglinide) works quickly to lower blood sugar, especially during mealtimes. However, it can cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) if you are not consistent with your diet and exercise schedule.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
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Have you used Prandin (repaglinide)?
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Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
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Side effects
PrandinPrecose
  • Common cold 8%
  • Low blood sugar 24%
  • Headache 1%
  • Joint pain 3%
  • Sinusitis 4%
  • Diarrhea 3%
  • Back pain 1%
  • Swelling in arms and legs 5%
  • Heart failure 4%
More Prandin side effects »
  • Excessive gas 46%
  • Diarrhea 19%
  • Stomach pain 10%
More Precose side effects »
How it works
PrandinPrecose
Prandin (repaglinide) stimulates your body to produce more insulin.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
PrandinPrecose
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
PrandinPrecose
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for
PrandinPrecose
Risk factors for serious side effects
PrandinPrecose
  • Alcoholism
  • Changes in meal pattern
  • Changes in exercise
  • Insulin
  • Other antidiabetic medications
Detailed Prandin (repaglinide) 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
PrandinPrecose
No interactions related info.
  • Has relatively few interactions with other medicines.
Food
PrandinPrecose
  • If you skip a meal, skip your dose to prevent hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
  • Quickly and effectively lowers blood sugar during meal times.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
PrandinPrecose
  • Not a good choice if you have poor kidney function, liver problems, or younger than 18 years old.
  • 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
PrandinPrecose
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
PrandinPrecose
  • May cause some weight gain.
  • Precose (acarbose) helps control meal-time blood sugar levels without causing weight gain.
Upsides and benefits
PrandinPrecose
  • Quickly and effectively lowers blood sugar during meal times.
  • Less likely to cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) than Starlix (nateglinide).
  • Good first-choice if you cannot tolerate metformin or add-on therapy if your blood sugars are not controlled on metformin alone.
  • 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
PrandinPrecose
  • May cause some weight gain.
  • May cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
  • Can frequently interfere with how other medicines work.
  • Not a good choice if you have poor kidney function, liver problems, or younger than 18 years old.
  • 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
PrandinPrecose
  • Works quickly to lower blood sugar so should be taken 15 to 30 minutes before a meal.
  • If you skip a meal, skip your dose to prevent hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
  • Maintain a regular diet and exercise schedule while on this medicine to prevent fluctuations in your blood sugar.
  • 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 PrandinSide effectsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Prandin (repaglinide)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about PrecoseSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it