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Jul 18, 2024


What is Tradjenta?

Tradjenta, a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor, offers a targeted approach to managing type 2 diabetes. By elevating the levels of incretin hormones in the body, Tradjenta effectively reduces blood sugar levels, providing a valuable therapeutic option for adults with type 2 diabetes.

Tradjenta is typically used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan that includes diet, exercise, and other prescription medications.

Notably, Tradjenta’s use in pediatric patients with type 2 diabetes remains unexplored due to the absence of clinical studies in this demographic.

How It Work

Tradjenta works by targeting a crucial enzyme in your body known as DPP-4. Normally, this enzyme breaks down incretin hormones responsible for regulating your blood sugar levels. By inhibiting DPP-4, Tradjenta extends the activity of these hormones, facilitating prolonged effectiveness. Consequently, these hormones can more effectively prompt your body to release insulin when your blood sugar levels are high, while also reducing the liver's production of sugar.”

This leads to improved control over your blood sugar levels, effectively management of type 2 diabetes. In essence, Tradjenta enhances your body's ability to regulate blood sugar levels by impeding enzyme activity and extending the beneficial effects of key hormones.


There are specific limitations associated with the use of this medication. Tradjenta is not intended for the treatment of:

  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Pancreatitis: The safety of Tradjenta has not been established for individuals with a history of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas)


Clinical studies have shown that Tradjenta can be effective in lowering blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes when used either alone or in combination with other diabetes medications, such as Metformin.

Studies have reported that Tradjenta reduced A1C levels by around 0.5% to 1% when compared to placebo.

In addition to efficacy, Tradjenta has been shown to have a low risk of causing hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and weight gain, making it a favorable option for many patients with type 2 diabetes.

Dosing and Administration

Tradjenta is available in tablet form, with a standard dosage strength of 5 mg. It can be taken orally, once daily, with or without food.

Unlike some medications that necessitate dose adjustments based on renal function, Tradjenta maintains a consistent dosing regimen across varying levels of kidney function. This eliminates the need for dosage modifications in individuals with kidney impairments.

Tradjenta begins to take effect within a few days of initiating treatment, although it may require several weeks to achieve its maximum effectiveness. Your doctor may advise regular monitoring of your blood sugar levels to gauge the impact of the medication.


Regular monitoring of blood sugar levels is essential to assess the efficacy of Tradjenta. Following at least three months of treatment, your doctor may recommend an A1C test, a blood test that shows your average blood sugar levels over a three-month period.

Side Effects

Common Side Effects
  • Headache
  • Upper respiratory tract infections (a common cold or a sinus infection)
  • Sore throat
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Low blood sugar
Serious Side Effects
  • Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar

    Symptoms may include confusion, dizziness, fatigue, increased heartbeat, headache, hunger, irritability, sweating, and/or weakness.

  • Severe autoimmune reactions, such as itching and blisters
  • Severe or ongoing pain in your joints
  • Pancreatitis (severe upper stomach pain spreading to the back, with or without vomiting)
  • Severe skin reactions (burning sensation in your eyes, skin pain, or a red or purple rash that spreads and leads to blistering and peeling)
  • Kidney problems (not urinating, swelling in your legs or ankles, feeling tired, trouble breathing, confusion, or feeling nauseous)
  • Symptoms of heart failure (shortness of breath, even while lying down, swelling in your legs or feet, and rapid weight gain)
  • Allergic reactions (hives, breathing difficulties, or swelling in your face or throat)

If you are experiencing any of these serious side effects, immediately call your doctor and stop taking this medication.

Tradjenta and Alcohol

It is recommended to avoid consuming alcohol while undergoing treatment with Tradjenta. Combining alcohol with this medication may result in dangerously low blood sugar levels and elevate the risk of pancreatitis.

If regularly consume alcohol and find it challenging to completely abstain, consult your healthcare provider regarding a safer limit for alcohol consumption.


Avoiding the use of Januvia with medications that could heighten the risk of specific side effects is recommended. For instance, beta-blockers like Metoprolol and Propranolol, as well as eye drops used for glaucoma containing Timolol, are among the medications that may interact with Januvia and increase the risk of adverse effects.Tradjenta may interact with certain medications or supplements, including St. John’s Wort, and may not work as well when you use other medications at the same time, as many other drugs can also affect your blood sugar control.

It is recommended to avoid using Tradjenta with medications that could increase your risk of certain side effects. Some of these medications include antibiotics such as Rifampin (which may make Tradjenta less effective), anticonvulsants, such as Carbamazepine, and other diabetes treatments, including insulin or sulfonylurea (which may increase the risk of hypoglycemia).


Pregnancy: Tradjenta is generally not recommended for use during pregnancy due to limited data on its safety in pregnant women.

While animal studies have revealed potential risks to the developing fetus, there's a lack of sufficient data from well-controlled studies involving pregnant women. If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, talk with your healthcare provider before starting or continuing Tradjenta.

Breastfeeding: Likewise, the use of Tradjenta while breastfeeding is not recommended due to uncertainties regarding its passage into human breast milk.

Although animal studies have shown excretion of Tradjenta into the milk of rats, the impact on human breast milk remains uncertain.

To make informed decisions about medication use during breastfeeding, consult with your healthcare provider. They can help assess the potential risks and benefits of using Tradjenta or alternative treatment options, taking into account both the mother's health and the infant's well-being.

Speak With Your Doctor

It is important to speak with your doctor about taking Tradjenta for type 2 diabetes because they can assess whether it's the right medication for you based on your individual health needs and medical history.

Your doctor can also guide you on how Tradjenta works, its potential benefits, and any possible side effects. Additionally, discussing Tradjenta's effectiveness with your doctor ensures that you have a comprehensive understanding of your treatment options and can make informed decisions about managing your diabetes effectively.

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