There are many drugs that can be prescribed to diabetic patients. Symlin, also known by its generic name as pramlintide, is one of the best and well-known analogs of the peptide hormone amylin (Jorsal, Rungby, Knop, & Vilsbøll, 2016). This characteristic makes pramlintide an effective drug for treating patients who have type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Pramlintide is produced in the form of salt in a dosage of 1000 mcg/mL. It is usually injected as an adjunct to mealtime insulin therapy among the patients who cannot achieve optimal blood sugar control. The mechanism of action of this drug depends on the qualities of amylin. Pramlintide aims at improving glycemic control. It is an acetate salt that contains a glucoregulatory hormone synthesized in pancreatic b-cells similar to insulin. Pramlintide promotes gastric emptying, satiety sensation, and the reduction of caloric intake. This drug has an effect in raising insulin response that is taken after a meal. Patients suffer from the low blood sugar level (known as hypoglycemia) after taking insulin, and pramlintide helps to gain control over this change. Weight loss is another effect of the chosen medication among diabetic patients.
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Like the majority of anti-diabetic drugs, pramlintide is metabolized by the kidneys. As it is a relatively new drug, research on pramlintide continues. It is known that it undergoes renal metabolism and urine excretion (Qvit, Rubin, Urban, Mochly-Rosen, & Gross, 2017). Its half-life is about 48 minutes with action duration of approximately three hours (Qvit et al., 2017). Diabetic patients who are going to use pramlintide as a part of their T1D therapy should learn more about its possible contraindications. For example, if a person has gastroparesis, this drug can cause dangerous reactions. In addition, hypoglycemia unawareness and hypersensitivity to pramlintide have to be taken into consideration. The risks of hypoglycemia may be increased in case a person skips a meal, does not check the number of allowed calories, or gets sick. Still, it is necessary to remember that not all effects and indications of pramlintide may be discovered at this moment, and patients are welcome to contribute to the improvement of pramlintide therapy by informing their doctors about any changes.
If a person is allergic, pramlintide can promote some unpredictable health changes. Therefore, special attention should be paid to the interactions of pramlintide with other drugs and substances. Taking into consideration the form of this drug, its mechanism of action, and the possibility to take it right after a meal, certain precautions should be followed. The doctor should teach people about the necessity to avoid alcohol use because it may change the level of blood sugar. The patient must learn that glucosidase inhibitors and anticholinergics are not recommended in case pramlintide is taken because these drugs can slow absorption. The interaction with such antidiabetic drugs as sulfonylurea is characterized by increased risks of hypoglycemia. Clinical studies continue, and the results of interactions between the chosen drugs and other approved for diabetic people medications may be improved. Therefore, attention to research is required. At this moment, the main adverse reactions of pramlintide include nausea, vomiting, headaches, and allergy. The doctor should make sure that the patient does not change the dosage independently and follows the prescription precisely because one deviation, omission, or neglect in diabetic treatment can lead to serious complications.
Jorsal, T., Rungby, J., Knop, F. K., & Vilsbøll, T. (2016).GLP-1 and amylin in the treatment of obesity. Current Diabetes Reports, 16(1), 1-7. Web.
Qvit, N., Rubin, S. J., Urban, T. J., Mochly-Rosen, D., & Gross, E. R. (2017). Peptidomimetic therapeutics: Scientific approaches and opportunities. Drug Discovery Today, 22(2), 454-462.