Diazoxide

Where is Diazoxide used?

Diazoxide is an FDA-approved medicine used for the treatment of hypoglycemia or low blood sugar levels. Hypoglycemia occurs once your blood sugar levels have fallen low enough. Low blood sugar triggers the release of epinephrine or adrenaline which is the fight-or-flight hormone. Epinephrine is what can cause the symptoms of hypoglycemia. Diazoxide is a thiazide drug but has no diuretic effects like other thiazides. This stops insulin release from the pancreas that helps to return the blood sugar to normal levels. Insulin is a natural substance that lowers blood sugar.

How does Diazoxide work?

Diazoxide works by slowing down the release of insulin from the pancreas. This helps blood sugar levels to increase. Insulin is the main hormone responsible for the control of sugar in the blood. It is released from cells in the pancreas in response to high levels of sugar in the blood. It also causes a reduction in blood sugar levels. If too much insulin is produced by the cells in the pancreas, this can cause blood sugar levels to fall too low and stay too low.  

How is Diazoxide taken?

Diazoxide is usually taken 2 to 3 times a day every 8 to 12 hours. Each medicine is taken by mouth. Your doctor may direct you to follow a special diet for your condition.

Take each dose exactly as it is prescribed by your doctor. To help you remember, take the drug at the same time and in the same way each day. Drink plenty of fluids while having this treatment. Doing so may lessen the risk of certain side effects. This medication usually begins to work within an hour and its effects can last up to 8 hours. Do not suddenly stop taking this medicine unless directed by your doctor.

What are the possible side effects of Diazoxide?

Common side effects:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach pain
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Decreased sense of taste

What are the precautions in taking Diazoxide?

  • Before using Diazoxide, let your doctor know if you ever had an allergic reaction to it. This may contain an inactive ingredient that causes an allergic reaction.  
  • If you have any medical history especially of diabetes, low blood mineral, heart disease, and kidney or liver disease, inform your doctor before taking this drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you have current medications such as herbal supplements or vitamins.
  • Your blood pressure must be checked regularly while taking medicine. If you feel dizzy, you need to lie down until the symptoms pass.
  • Diazoxide may cause your body to retain water and you may need to take diuretic tablets. It is to help you get rid of some excess fluids.
  • Call your doctor if you have any unexplained bleeding or bruising while taking this medication. As these could be signs of a problem with your blood cells.
  • During pregnancy, this prescription should only be used when needed and prescribed by your doctor. If you are breastfeeding women, consult your doctor first. If you get pregnant while taking this drug, call your doctor right away.