Actos (pioglitazone) is a prescription brand-name medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it to manage blood sugar levels with diet and exercise in adults with type 2 diabetes.

The active ingredient and generic form of Actos is pioglitazone. It’s classified as a thiazolidinedione.

Actos comes as a tablet that you swallow.

For information on the dosage of Actos, including its form, strengths, and how to take the drug, keep reading. For a comprehensive look at Actos, see this article.

This article describes typical dosages for Actos provided by the drug’s manufacturer. When taking Actos, always follow the dosage prescribed by your doctor or healthcare professional.

Below is information about Actos dosages for the conditions it’s approved to treat.

Actos form

Actos comes a tablet that you swallow.

Actos strengths

Actos tablets are available in three strengths: 15 milligrams (mg), 30 mg, and 45 mg.

Typical dosages

Typically, your doctor will start you on a low dosage. Then they’ll adjust it over time to reach the amount that’s right for you. Your doctor will ultimately prescribe the smallest dosage that provides the desired effect.

The following information describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. However, be sure to take the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for type 2 diabetes

For reducing blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes, the recommended starting dosage of Actos is 15 mg or 30 mg once per day. Your doctor will monitor your blood sugar levels and use these readings to determine the best dose for you.

Depending on how well the medication help manages your blood sugar levels, your doctor may increase your dosage. They may increase it by 15 mg up to the max dose of 45 mg once per day.

Long-term use

Actos is meant to be used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Actos is safe and effective for you, you’ll likely take it long term.

Below are answers to some frequently asked questions about Actos dosages.

Will I take more than one tablet depending on which Actos strength I’m prescribed (15 mg, 30 mg, 45 mg)?

No, the number of tablets of Actos you take per day doesn’t vary by strength. No matter the strength you’re prescribed, the recommended dosage is one Actos tablet per day.

I’m taking Actos in combination with metformin. What might my Actos dosage be?

Your Actos dosage and strength will depend on several factors. These may include your blood sugar levels, your treatment goals, and whether or not you have side effects.

If you have additional questions about taking Actos with metformin, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. For more information about what may impact your Actos dosage, see “Factors that can affect your dosage” below.

The Actos dosage your doctor prescribes will depend on several factors. These include:

  • the severity of your type 2 diabetes
  • your treatment goals
  • other medications that you may take for type 2 diabetes
  • other medical conditions you have

Dosage adjustments

Actos has a boxed warning about causing or worsening congestive heart failure (CHF). This is a serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A boxed warning alerts doctors and patients about drug effects that may be dangerous.

Treatment with Actos can cause CHF, a serious condition that prevents your heart from pumping blood well enough. This can cause your body to store extra fluid, which leads to weight gain and swelling. Extra body fluid can lead to heart failure or make some heart problems worse.

Actos should not be started in people with class 3 or 4 heart failure as classified by the New York Heart Association (NYHA). It’s also not recommended for people with symptomatic heart failure. This is because thiazolidinedione drugs like Actos can make heart failure worse in people who already have this condition.

It’s also recommended that people with NYHA class 1 or 2 heart failure start with a lower dose of Actos, 15 mg once per day.

If you have heart failure, be sure to let your doctor know before you begin taking Actos. They can determine whether the medication is safe for you to take.

Actos comes as tablets that you swallow. It’s typically taken once per day.

You may take Actos with or without food.

If you miss a dose of Actos, simply skip the missed dose. Take your next scheduled dose at the regular time. Do not take more than one dose of Actos at the same time.

To help make sure that you don’t miss a dose, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or using a timer. You could also download a reminder app on your phone.

It’s important that you don’t use more Actos than your doctor prescribes. For some medications, taking more than the recommended amount may lead to side effects or overdose.

If you take more than the recommended amount of Actos

Call your doctor right away if you believe you’ve taken too much of Actos. Another option is to call the American Association of Poison Control Centers at 800-222-1222 or use their online tool. If you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number, or go to the nearest emergency room.

The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Actos for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. Always follow the dosage that your doctor prescribes for you.

As with any drug, never change your dosage of Actos without your doctor’s recommendation. If you have questions about the dosage of Actos that’s right for you, talk with your doctor.

Besides learning about dosage, you may want other information about Actos. These additional articles might be helpful to you:

Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.