Actos is an anti-diabetic prescription brand name drug. Is it typically prescribed to control high blood sugar in individuals with type 2 diabetes. It is used in conjunction with proper diet and an exercise program. It may be used on its own or may be combined with other anti-diabetic medication.

Pioglitazone hcl is the active ingredient in Actos. Also the generic drug name, pioglitazone is part of a class of drugs called thiazolidinediones, which are also called glitazones. It reduces blood sugar levels by making cells in the body more sensitive to insulin, which enables the cells to absorb more glucose from the blood.

The body of a person who has type 2 diabetes does not efficiently use the hormone insulin. Due to this abnormality, the hormone cannot control the amount of sugar or glucose in the blood. This can lead to high blood sugar levels, which increases the risk of serious health complications such as kidney damage, blindness, loss of limb, nerve problems, and sexual function issues. Type 2 diabetes also increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. By helping to control blood sugar, Actos can reduce the risk of these serious and life-threatening health complications.

That being said, Actos can cause side effects of its own. The most common side effects associated with this medication include: muscle pain, sore throat, tooth problems or weight gain. This medication may also cause more serious effects including vision problems, bone fracture, pain while urinating, reddish-colored urine, or the urgent need to urinate. Inform your doctor right away if you experience any symptoms.

It should also be noted that, although not common, Actos may cause liver problems. If you experience any symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, dark urine, flu-like symptoms, unusual bruising or bleeding, extreme lack of energy or yellowing of the skin or eyes, contact your doctor immediately.

This drug is not safe for everyone. Inform your doctor if you have heart disease or congestive heart failure, a history or heart attack or stroke, a history of bladder cancer, fluid retention, or liver disease. This medication may be prescribed to pregnant women depending on the individual circumstance.

That being said, inform your doctor of any past or present health conditions you may have as well as tell him or her of any medications, over-the-counter drugs or supplements you may be taking.

Remember that if you have been prescribed this medication, your doctor believes that the benefits of taking Actos outweigh its risks. Take Actos as it has been prescribed to you and do not stop taking this medication without first consulting your doctor.