Symlin (Pramlintide acetate) Injection

What is Symlin?

Symlin is an injectable medication used in conjunction with mealtime insulin to control blood sugar in adults with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. It is the only member of this family called amylin mimetics. In particular, Symlin helps to lower after meal blood sugar levels and prevents the blood sugar spiking too high. Adding Symlin does not replace daily insulin but may lower the amount of insulin you need, especially before meals. It works in three ways:

• It helps food move out of the stomach at a slower rate, which helps control the rate at which sugar enters the bloodstream following meals.
• It reduces the amount of sugar that the liver sends into the bloodstream after meals.
• It helps regulate food intake by decreasing appetite, potentially leading to weight loss.

Who can use this medicine?

Symlin should only be used by adults with type 1 or type 2 diabetes who:
• Already use their insulin as prescribed, but still need help achieving better control.
• Will follow their doctor's instructions.
• Are willing to follow up with their medical team regularly.
• Will test their blood sugar levels before and after every meal and before bed.
• Understand how Symlin works and how to adjust doses with their medical team.

Who should not use Symlin?

• Those who cannot detect low blood sugars (known as hypoglycemia unawareness).
• People who have a stomach problem called gastroparesis
• People allergic to Symlin or any ingredients in Symlin


This medicine is often very helpful for people who have a "rollercoaster" effect with blood glucose particularly after eating. Since this medicine decreases appetite you might lose some weight.


Since Symlin is used with insulin to lower blood sugar, your blood sugar may drop too low, particularly if you have type 1 diabetes. When first starting Symlin, be sure to reduce your doses of insulin before meals if recommended by your healthcare provider to reduce the chances of low blood sugar. Since Symlin must be injected along with insulin and the two cannot be mixed it creates a situation where two shots are given before each meal.

What dosage can I take and how should I take it?

The initial dosage for type 1 is 15 mcg and 60 mcg for type 2. Both can be increased as your healthcare provider sees is usually taken 3 times daily before meals.

What are the most common side effects of using Symlin
• Low blood sugar
• Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain
• Decreased appetite
• Reactions at the injections site

Reviewed by James A. Bennett 5/14

Last Modified Date: May 23, 2014

All content on is created and reviewed in compliance with our editorial policy.

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by Brenda Bell
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