1 Chlorpropamide (Oral Route): A Summary

Brand name:


Chlorpropamide is a sulfonylurea used to hyperglycemia caused by type 2 diabetes.

Chlorpropamide increases the release of insulin from the pancreas to counteract the defect in type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is first managed by proper diet and exercise but oftentimes drugs are needed decrease serum glucose level to ideal levels.

Chlorpropramide is a prescription drug.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before taking this drug, the risks and benefits for your body should be discussed with your healthcare provider.

Inform your healthcare provider for any allergic reactions to these drugs or any other drugs, foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals.

Carefully read the label of non-prescription drugs for any possible allergic reaction or contraindications.

Your healthcare professional can give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Inform your healthcare provider for any other medical problems especially.

For patients with kidney or liver disease, the effects of this drug may be potentiated due to slower excretion of the drug from the body.

3 Proper Usage

The most important part of controlling your diabetes is to comply with your prepared meal plan.

Regular physical exercise and monitoring of blood sugar levels are also recommended. This drug must be taken every morning with breakfast.

The dose of this drug will be variable for different patients. The directions on the label or the prescription by your healthcare professional should be followed. The dosage of this drug you take depends on the medical problem for which you are using this drug.

Adults with type 2 diabetes are usually prescribed with oral dosage form (tablets) at 250 mg once a day not exceeding 750 mg per day.

Use and dose for children must be determined by your healthcare professional.

A missed dose should be taken as soon as possible. However, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule if it is almost time for your next dose.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing. Keep out of the reach of children. Dispose any outdated or expired drugs and ask your healthcare professional for the proper disposal of the drugs.

4 Precautions to Take

Regular visits should be made to your healthcare provider to track your progress and to monitor the effectiveness of the drug.

Unwanted effects can be screened using blood tests. Consult with your healthcare professional for any instructions about alcohol intake which may cause severe low blood sugar.

Your healthcare professional may give special counselling on intake of diabetes drug about dosing changes that might occur because of lifestyle change and pregnancy.

Keep your medical history and prescription with you while travelling and always be prepared for any emergency that would happen relating to your diabetes.

Be consistent with your meal times as close as possible and be aware of any changes in the time zone. Be sure to carry proper identification cards with notes stating that you are a diagnosed diabetic.

Consult with your healthcare provider immediately if you have symptoms of a possible heart problem such as:

Hypoglycemia can also be caused by this drug or if you delay or miss a meal or snack, drink alcohol, exercise more than usual, cannot eat because of nausea or vomiting, take certain medicines, or take other types of diabetes drugs.

There are a lot of different symptoms of low blood sugar that you should be alarmed of such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Behavior change similar to being drunk
  • Blurred vision
  • Cold sweats
  • Confusion
  • Cool, pale skin
  • Difficulty with thinking
  • Drowsiness
  • Excessive hunger
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Nervousness
  • Nightmares
  • Restless sleep
  • Shakiness
  • Slurred speech
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness

Eat glucose tablets or gel, corn syrup, honey, or sugar cubes, or drink fruit juice, non-diet soft drink, or sugar dissolved in water if these symptoms occur.

When severe symptoms such as seizures or unconsciousness occur, glucagon may be used as treatment. A glucagon kit must always be available, along with a syringe with a user manual.

Consult with your healthcare professional before taking prescription or non-prescription drugs, and herbal or vitamin supplements.

5 Potential Side Effects

Side effects may vary for each individual and prompt medical attention should be given if they occur.

Symptoms of abdominal or stomach pain agitation black, tarry stools, chills, clay-colored stools, coma, confusion, continuing diarrhea, continuing stomach pain, convulsions, dark urine, decreased urine output, depression, diarrhea, dizziness, fast or irregular heartbeat, fever headache, hostility, increased thirst, irritability, itching, lethargy, loss of appetite, muscle pain or cramps, muscle twitching, nausea or vomiting, rapid weight gain, rash, seizures, shortness of breath, stupor, swelling of the face, ankles, or hands, unpleasant breath odor, unusual tiredness or weakness, vomiting of blood, yellow,eyes or skin are rare while anxiety back, leg, or stomach pains, bleeding gums, blood in the urine or stools, blurred vision, chest pain, cold sweats, cool, pale skin, cough or hoarseness, depression, difficulty with breathing, fever with or without chills, fluid-filled skin blisters, general body swelling, general feeling of tiredness or weakness, headache, high fever, increased hunger, lower back or side pain, nervousness, nightmares, nosebleeds, painful or difficult urination, pinpoint red spots on the skin, sensitivity to the sun, shakiness, skin thinness, slurred speech, sore throat sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth, swollen or painful glands, tightness in the chest, unusual bleeding or bruising, and wheezing have unknown incidence.

As your body adjusts to the medicine, the side effects will slowly disappear. Ask your healthcare professional about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

If any of the following side effects persists, or are inconvenient, or if you notice any other effects, or if you have any questions about them, consult with your health care professional.

Some side effects are:

  • Indigestion
  • Passing of gas
  • Hives or welts
  • Redness of the skin
  • Weight loss
  • Blistering
  • Peeling or loosening of the skin
  • Cracks in the skin
  • Loss of heat from the body
  • Red, irritated eyes
  • Red, swollen skin
  • Scaly skin
  • Increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight
  • Redness or other discoloration of the skin
  • Severe sunburn

Report any side effects to the FDA hotline at 1-800-FDA-1088.