Compare Precose vs. Novolog

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

Precose
(acarbose)

Novolog
(Insulin Aspart)

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.Lowers blood sugar. Novolog is a fast-acting insulin that provides meal-time sugar control. It can cause low blood sugar, so make sure you know what the symptoms are and always have a source of sugar nearby.
Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Novolog
58%
+42% better vs. Precose
46%
+54% better vs. Precose
19%
+19% better vs. Precose
177 reviews
Have you used Novolog (Insulin Aspart)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
PrecoseNovolog
  • Stomach pain 10%
  • Diarrhea 19%
  • Excessive gas 46%
More Precose side effects »
  • Chest pain 5%
  • Headache 5%
  • Skin disorder 5%
  • Abdominal pain 5%
  • Sinusitis 5%
  • Urinary tract infection 8%
  • Sensory disturbance 9%
  • Onychomycosis 10%
  • Hyporeflexia 11%
  • Diarrhea 5%
More Novolog side effects »
How it works
PrecoseNovolog
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.Novolog is a short-acting insulin medicine for diabetes. It acts like the insulin that your body normally makes to process sugars and fats, and it keeps your blood sugar stable after meals.
Type of medication
PrecoseNovolog
Prescription onlyLower-cost generic availablePrescription onlyNo lower cost generic available
Available as
PrecoseNovolog
  • Pill
  • Injection
Used for
PrecoseNovolog
Risk factors for serious side effects
PrecoseNovolog
  • Using insulin or other medicines that stimulate insulin release
  • Those with kidney problems
  • Taking multiple medicines together
Detailed Precose (acarbose) risks & warnings »
  • Insulin dose too high
  • Use of other blood sugar lowering medicines
  • Poor injection techniques
  • Unstable kidney functions
  • Unstable liver functions
Detailed Novolog (Insulin Aspart) 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
PrecoseNovolog
  • Has relatively few interactions with other medicines.
No interactions related info.
Food
PrecoseNovolog
No food related info.
  • Short-acting insulin good for blood sugar control around meal times.
  • Novolog is a fast-acting insulin that provides sugar control after meals.
Kidneys and liver
PrecoseNovolog
  • 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.
  • Okay to use even if you have liver or kidney problems, unlike most other blood sugar-lowering medicines.
Pain
PrecoseNovolog
  • 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.
No pain related info.
Weight
PrecoseNovolog
  • Precose (acarbose) helps control meal-time blood sugar levels without causing weight gain.
  • Can cause weight gain and low blood sugar.
  • Likely to cause moderate weight gain (around 4 to 6 pounds).
Upsides and benefits
PrecoseNovolog
  • 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.
  • Insulin is the most effective blood sugar-lowering medicine. When used correctly, it'll lower blood sugar every time you use it and prevent the harmful effects of high sugar levels on your organs and blood vessels.
  • Novolog is a fast-acting insulin that provides sugar control after meals.
  • Dose can be easily adjusted to make a customized regimen that's tailored to your body.
  • Starting insulin early in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes can maintain your body's insulin-producing cells and slow down disease progression.
  • Okay to use even if you have liver or kidney problems, unlike most other blood sugar-lowering medicines.
Downsides and risks
PrecoseNovolog
  • 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.
  • You have to take insulin by injection.
  • You have to check your blood sugar multiple times every day, usually before each meal.
  • Likely to cause moderate weight gain (around 4 to 6 pounds).
  • Higher risk of low blood sugar episodes than other kinds of diabetes medicines.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
PrecoseNovolog
  • 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.
  • Short-acting insulin good for blood sugar control around meal times.
  • Take 5 to 10 minutes before a meal. Effects last for 2-4 hours.
  • Can cause weight gain and low blood sugar.
  • Make sure you and your family know the symptoms of low blood sugar: sweating, shakiness, weakness, fast heartbeat, nervousness, headache, blurry vision, trouble thinking clearly, or passing out.
  • Always have a good source of sugar nearby for low blood sugar episodes.
  • Make sure you understand how to give yourself the injections.
  • When mixing with another insulin (such as insulin NPH), draw this insulin into the syringe first.
  • Don't shake the vial. Store unopened vials in the refrigerator. Opened vials are good at room temperature for 28 days.
  • Check your blood sugar levels every day.
Learn more
More about PrecoseSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Precose (acarbose)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about NovologSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Novolog (Insulin Aspart)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it