Compare glyburide vs. Afrezza

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

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Diabeta (glyburide)

Prescription only

Afrezza (insulin)

Prescription only
Lowers blood sugar.

Diabeta (glyburide) is a good oral anti-diabetic medicine, but can cause hypoglycemia or low blood sugar.

3.3/ 5 average rating with 110 reviewsforglyburide
Controls mealtime blood sugar.

Afrezza (insulin) is effective at controlling blood sugar, but you can't use it if you've had lung problems or smoke.

Upsides
  • 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.
  • Afrezza (insulin) is as effective as other mealtime insulin products.
  • Starts working faster and stays in your body for a shorter time than other mealtime insulin products, so you're less likely to have severely low blood sugar.
  • If you don't like needles, Afrezza (insulin) is a good alternative since you inhale it.
  • Safe to use in people 65 or older.
  • Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about ways to lower your copay, such as coupons.
Downsides
  • 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.
  • Not recommended if you're a smoker or if you've smoked in the last 6 months.
  • Afrezza (insulin) only comes in 3 different strengths, so it can be inconvenient if you need a lot of insulin.
  • Not recommended in children under 18.
  • If you're pregnant, you'll need to talk to your doctor before you start Afrezza (insulin).
  • There is no generic available, and may not be covered right away by Medicare or other insurances.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Inhalation powder
Price
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Reviews
110 reviews so far
45%
saidit'sworth it
34%
saiditworked well
21%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
2possible side effects
  • Nausea and heartburn
    2%
  • Skin allergies
    2%
See more detailed side effects
6possible side effects
  • Cough
    28%
  • Throat pain or irritation
    6%
  • Headache
    5%
  • Worsening lung function test
    3%
  • Airway inflammation
    3%
  • Urinary tract infection
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Low blood sugar
    • Over age 65
    • Kidney problems
    • Use of other blood sugar lowering medicines
    • Alcohol
    • Intense physical activity
  • Severe allergic reactions
    • History of sulfa allergies
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Low blood sugar
    • Changes in diet and exercise
    • Drinking alcohol
    • Taking other medications for diabetes
    • Over age 65
    • Liver or kidney problems
  • Breathing problems
    • Asthma
    • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
    • Other long term lung problems
  • Low blood potassium levels
    • Taking laxatives
    • Taking medications that increase urination
  • Worsening lung function
    • Smoking
    • Second-hand smoke
    • Indoor and outdoor pollution
    • Work-related fume and chemical exposure
  • Fluid buildup
    • Taking Avandia or Actos
  • Too much acid in the blood
    • Type 1 diabetes
    • Long periods of fasting
    • Alchohol abuse
    • History of pancreatitis
See more detailed risks and warnings