Brand Name (Generic Name)

Tradjenta (linagliptin)

What is Tradjenta?

It is a member of the DPP-4 Inhibitor family of medicines that we have nicknamed "gliptins". Tradjenta works by enhancing the body's natural ability to control high blood sugar. As your blood sugar begins to go up after a meal, Tradjenta goes to work by asking the pancreas to put out more insulin and it also keeps the liver from putting out unneeded glucose. These two actions together tend to lower your blood sugar particularly after meals. As the blood sugar goes down to normal levels the Tradjenta backs away so that is why it usually does not cause your blood sugar to drop too low.

Who can take Tradjenta?

Selected people with type 2 diabetes can use this prescription medicine alone or in combination with some of the other diabetes medicines.

Who should not take Tradjenta?

Tradjenta is not for people with type 1 diabetes or for people with diabetic ketoacidosis (increased ketones in the blood or urine). It should be used with caution in people who are at high risk for pancreatitis. Do not take Tradjenta if you are allergic to linagliptin or any of the ingredients in Tradjenta. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction to Tradjenta are rash, raised red patches on your skin (hives), swelling of your face, lips, and throat that may cause difficulty breathing or swallowing. If you have any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, stop taking Tradjenta and call your doctor right away.

What are the advantages?

Tradjenta like the other DPP-4 inhibitors is weight neutral, meaning it does not cause weight gain. When used alone is unlikely to cause your blood sugar to be lowered to a dangerous level (hypoglycemia) because it does not cause insulin to be secreted when blood sugar is normal or low. It can be used alone or together with one of several common oral diabetes medicines, such as metformin, a thiazolidinedione (TZD), or a sulfonylurea. It seems to work even better in combination that it does alone.

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

The initial dosage is 5 mg and is taken once daily with or without food.

What are the common side effects?
• Stuffy or runny nose and sore throat
• Cough
• Diarrhea
• These are not all the possible side effects so tell your healthcare provider if you have side effects that are bothersome and do not go away.

What else should you know about Tradjenta before taking it?

There is more information about Tradjenta and pancreatitis. Please consult the accompanying FDA approved Medication Guide for further information.

Download the Tradjenta medication guide.

Reviewed by James Bennett 5/14

Last Modified Date: July 07, 2014

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

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by Brenda Bell
As I mentioned in an earlier post, one of the benefits that made it cost-effective for me to go with the real healthcare (HSA) plan rather than the phony (HRA) plan is that my company is now covering "preventative" medicines at $0 copay. The formulary for these, as stated by CVS/Caremark (my pharmacy benefits provider), covers all test strips, lancets, and control solutions. I dutifully get my doctor to write up prescriptions for all of my testing needs, submit...
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