Glyxambi (empagliflozin/linagliptin) is a brand-name prescription medication. It’s approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the following uses in adults with type 2 diabetes:
- help manage blood sugar levels when used with a nutritious diet and exercise
- decrease the risk of death due to conditions such as heart attack and stroke in adults who also have cardiovascular disease*
You’ll likely take Glyxambi long term for either condition if you and your doctor decide the drug is working well for you.
Here are some fast facts about Glyxambi:
- Active ingredients: empagliflozin and linagliptin
- Drug classes: empagliflozin is a sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 inhibitor and linagliptin is a dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitor
- Drug form: oral tablet
Like other drugs, Glyxambi can cause side effects (also called adverse effects). Read on to learn about potential common, mild, and serious side effects. For a general overview of Glyxambi, including details about its uses and limitations, see this article.
* Empagliflozin, one of the active drugs in Glyxambi, helps decrease the risk.
Glyxambi can cause certain side effects, some of which are more common than others. These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days to weeks. If the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
These are just a few of the more common side effects reported by people who took Glyxambi in clinical trials:
* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.
Mild side effects can occur with Glyxambi. This list doesn’t include all possible mild side effects of the drug. For more details, you can refer to Glyxambi’s prescribing information.
Mild side effects that have been reported with Glyxambi include:
- mild joint pain
- feeling thirstier than usual
- mild fungal infection of the genitals
- mild urinary tract infection*
- urinating more often than usual
- common cold
- upper respiratory infection, such as sinus infection
These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days to weeks. If the side effects last longer than that, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Note: After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves a drug, it tracks side effects of the medication. If you develop a side effect while taking Glyxambi and want to tell the FDA about it, visit MedWatch.
Glyxambi may cause serious side effects. The list below may not include all possible serious side effects of the drug. For more details, you can refer to Glyxambi’s prescribing information.
If you develop serious side effects while taking Glyxambi, call your doctor right away. If the side effects seem life threatening or you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.
Serious side effects that have been reported with Glyxambi and their symptoms include:
- Heart failure. Symptoms can include:
- swelling in your legs, feet, or ankles
- sudden weight gain, such as 5 pounds in 1 week, that’s unplanned
- trouble breathing or shortness of breath
- Fournier’s gangrene (an infection of your genital area that’s rare, but could be life threatening). Symptoms can include:
- red, painful, tender, or swollen skin in or around your anus or genitals
- feeling weak
- Bullous pemphigoid (a condition in which your immune system mistakenly attacks your skin). Symptoms can include:
- skin rash or blisters on areas such as the armpits, abdomen, and inner thighs
- Severe joint pain.
- Volume depletion (decreased levels of fluids in the body), which may cause dehydration or kidney damage. Symptoms can include:
- fast heart rate
- muscle cramps
- feeling dizzy or lightheaded
- Severe urinary tract infection.*
- Diabetic ketoacidosis.*
- Pancreas inflammation.*
- Allergic reaction.*
* For more information about this side effect, see “Side effect specifics” below.
Glyxambi may cause several side effects. Here are some frequently asked questions about the drug’s side effects and their answers.
I’m taking Glyxambi 25/5 mg. What side effects can I expect?
The side effects of Glyxambi 25/5 milligrams (mg) should be the same as those of Glyxambi 10/5 mg. These figures refer to the two strengths of the drug:
- 25/5 mg: 25 mg of empagliflozin plus 5 mg of linagliptin
- 10/5 mg: 10 mg of empagliflozin plus 5 mg of linagliptin
Side effects are possible if you take either strength of Glyxambi. In clinical trials, most common side effects occurred just as often whether people took the 25/5 mg or 10/5 mg strength of the drug.
You can refer to the rest of this article for information about what side effects may occur with Glyxambi. Your doctor and pharmacist are also good resources.
Will I have low blood sugar while taking Glyxambi?
Possibly. In clinical trials, low blood sugar (also called hypoglycemia) occurred in people who took Glyxambi in combination with certain drugs. These medications included insulin and insulin secretagogues such as Amaryl (glimepiride).
If you take other medication to manage type 2 diabetes, tell your doctor. They may adjust your dose to help prevent low blood sugar with Glyxambi.
You should also be aware of possible symptoms of low blood sugar. These can include lightheadedness, shakiness, and fainting. Other possible symptoms are fatigue, excessive hunger, excessive sweating. Ask your doctor how you should treat low blood sugar and when to seek help.
Will stopping Glyxambi treatment cause side effects of withdrawal?
Withdrawal side effects have not been reported in people who have stopped taking Glyxambi. However, it’s possible that stopping Glyxambi treatment could make your blood sugar levels harder to manage. This is because the drug will no longer be working to keep them low.
It’s important to talk with your doctor before you stop taking Glyxambi. If they decide to end your treatment, your doctor can help make sure that your blood sugar levels are still properly managed.
Learn more about some of the side effects that Glyxambi may cause. To find out how often side effects occurred in clinical trials, see the prescribing information for Glyxambi.
Taking Glyxambi may cause diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a condition where your body doesn’t get enough glucose (sugar) and substances called ketones build up. Diabetic ketoacidosis was a rare side effect in clinical trials of empagliflozin (one of the active ingredients in Glyxambi).
Symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis may include:
- increased thirst
- high blood sugar level
- dry mouth
- urinating often
- nausea and vomiting
- fruity-smelling breath
- abdominal pain
- trouble breathing
What you can do
Although diabetic ketoacidosis is a rare side effect, it may cause a coma or, in certain cases, be fatal. The condition requires treatment in a hospital. Call your doctor right away if you experience symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis with Glyxambi. If you think your symptoms are life threatening, call 911 or your local emergency number.
Urinary tract infection
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are a common side effect of Glyxambi. Severe UTIs, such as kidney infection and urosepsis (a serious infection that starts in the bladder, kidneys, or urinary tract) are rare. These severe infections have been reported in people taking empagliflozin, which is one of the active ingredients in Glyxambi.
Symptoms of severe UTIs may include:
- pelvic pain
- blood in urine
- burning sensation when urinating
- need to urinate urgently
What you can do
If you experience symptoms of a UTI with Glyxambi, talk with your doctor right away. Receiving treatment early on may help prevent the UTI from becoming severe.
Glyxambi may cause pancreatitis (inflammation of your pancreas). This was a rare side effect in clinical trials of linagliptin (one of the active ingredients in Glyxambi). In certain cases, pancreatitis can be fatal.
Symptoms of pancreatitis may include:
- abdominal pain that’s severe and may spread to your back
What you can do
Call your doctor right away if you have symptoms of pancreatitis during Glyxambi treatment. If you think your symptoms are life threatening, call 911 or your local emergency number.
Certain conditions and factors may increase your risk of pancreatitis. These include having a history of pancreatitis, alcohol use disorder, a high triglyceride level, and gallstones. However, it’s unknown if you’re at an increased risk of pancreatitis while taking Glyxambi if you have these conditions or factors. Your doctor will help determine if Glyxambi is safe for you. To learn more, see “Precautions for Glyxambi” below.
As with most drugs, Glyxambi can cause an allergic reaction in some people. This side effect wasn’t reported in clinical trials of Glyxambi. However, allergic reactions have been reported for linagliptin and empagliflozin (the active ingredients in Glyxambi).
Symptoms can be mild or serious and can include:
- skin rash
- swelling under your skin, typically in your lips, eyelids, feet, or hands
- swelling of your mouth, tongue, or throat, which can make it hard to breathe
What you can do
For mild symptoms of an allergic reaction, call your doctor right away. They may recommend ways to ease your symptoms and determine whether you should keep taking Glyxambi. If your symptoms are serious and you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.
Be sure to talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Glyxambi. This drug may not be the right treatment for you if you have certain medical conditions or other factors that affect your health. The conditions and factors to consider include:
Type 1 diabetes. Glyxambi may cause a serious condition called diabetic ketoacidosis. This condition is more likely to occur in people who have type 1 diabetes. For this reason, doctors typically will not prescribe Glyxambi if you have type 1 diabetes. Your doctor can recommend possible type 1 diabetes treatment options.
Urinary tract infections or genital infections. Glyxambi may cause urinary tract infections or genital infections. If you have these infections frequently or had them often in the past, talk with your doctor. The drug may increase your risk of them. Your doctor may recommend a different medication that’s safer for you.
Allergic reaction. If you’ve had an allergic reaction to Glyxambi or any of its ingredients, your doctor will likely not prescribe Glyxambi. Ask them what other medications may be better options for you.
Pancreas problems. In rare cases, Glyxambi may cause pancreatitis.* A history of problems with the pancreas may increase the risk of pancreatitis. Due to this risk, be sure tell your doctor if you have or have had pancreas problems. They can help determine whether Glyxambi is safe for you to take.
Alcohol use disorder. In rare cases, Glyxambi treatment may cause pancreatitis.* Alcohol use disorder may increase the risk of pancreatitis. Due to this risk, be sure to tell your doctor if you have or have had alcohol use disorder. They can advise you on whether Glyxambi is right for you.
High triglyceride level. In rare cases, Glyxambi may cause pancreatitis.* A high triglyceride level may increase the risk of pancreatitis. Due to this risk, be sure to tell your doctor if your triglyceride level is or has been high. They can advise you on whether Glyxambi is right for you
Gallstones. In rare cases, Glyxambi treatment may cause pancreatitis.* Gallstones may increase the risk of pancreatitis. Due to this risk, be sure to tell your doctor if you have or have had gallstones. They can help determine whether Glyxambi is the right medication for you.
Kidney problems. If you have severe kidney problems and take Glyxambi, you may experience more side effects than usual. Due to this risk, doctors typically will not prescribe Glyxambi if you have severe kidney problems, such as end stage renal disease or polycystic kidney disease. Your doctor can advise you on whether Glyxambi is safe for you if you have kidney problems or need dialysis treatment.
* This was a rare side effect in clinical trials of linagliptin (one of the active ingredients in Glyxambi).
Alcohol and Glyxambi
Drinking alcohol, especially often and in large amounts, may increase your risk of side effects from Glyxambi. These side effects can include hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). They can also include diabetic ketoacidosis,* a condition where your body doesn’t get enough glucose (sugar) and substances called ketones build up. Both hypoglycemia and ketoacidosis may be life threatening.
If you drink alcohol, talk with your doctor about how much, if any, is safe to consume while taking Glyxambi.
* Diabetic ketoacidosis was a rare side effect in clinical trials of empagliflozin (one of the active ingredients in Glyxambi).
Pregnancy and breastfeeding while taking Glyxambi
It’s unknown whether Glyxambi is safe to take during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. However, your doctor will likely advise that you do not take Glyxambi in the second or third trimester* of pregnancy or while breastfeeding. This is based on the possible risks of the drug.
In animal studies, pregnant animals given empagliflozin (an active ingredient in Glyxambi) developed kidney problems. Also, based on animal studies, kidney problems could occur in children exposed to Glyxambi through breastfeeding. It’s important to note that animal studies don’t always indicate what may happen in humans.
Keep in mind that’s it’s important to manage type 2 diabetes during pregnancy to avoid serious complications, such as preeclampsia. This is a sudden increase in blood pressure. You can talk with your doctor about medications other than Glyxambi if you’re pregnant or plan on becoming pregnant.
If you’re breastfeeding or thinking about it, ask your doctor what diabetes treatment is right for you.
* The second trimester is months 4 to 6 of pregnancy. The third trimester is months 7 to 9.
Glyxambi may cause side effects. Most side effects are mild and will go away on their own or with treatment. In rare cases, some side effects may be severe and possibly life threatening. Talk with your doctor if you experience any side effects while taking Glyxambi.
If you’d like to learn more about Glyxambi, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can help answer any questions you have about side effects from taking the drug.
Besides talking with your doctor, you can do some research on your own. These articles might help:
- More information about Glyxambi. For details about other aspects of Glyxambi, refer to this article.
- A look at type 2 diabetes. For details about your condition, see our diabetes hub this list of related articles. This exercise and fitness hub may also be helpful.
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.