Is anybody using Sitagliptin (Januvia)?

Occasionally I drop by Yahoo! Answers (they have a category for EVERYTHING under the sun, I recommend you try it) and answer a few questions on diabetes. A few folks who have joined, actually came from there.

Today I found this question, and it dawned on me that I myself wasn’t familiar with it:
Has anyone tried the new drug for diabetes called Sitagliptin (Januvia)?

I was prescribed Januvia but decided not to take it after reading Jenny’s blog. It hasn’t been tested for very long so I was not sure it was completely safe.

I’m not taking Januvia (obviously, I’m not diabetic), but I am a home health nurse. A couple of my patients recently went on it. It is amazing how well their sugars have been since starting it. They have been my patients for years, so I don’t think it’s a fluke that after going on it, their sugars started evening out.

But, I’m not very well-versed in the side effects of it.


Coincidentally I just put up a page on my blog this morning about how Januvia works.

Unfortunately, if you read the hype that is being promoted about this drug, you’ll run into a lot of misinformation. It works for people who respond strongly to a Sulfonylurea drug, which included me for 3 months, but it has some unpleasant side effect, and MOST importantly, there is some evidence that it makes changes to the operation of the immune system which could allow cancers to grow that the body would otherwise be able to fight off.

Melanoma is the cancer that the body appears to fight by using DPP-4, the enzyme that Januvia inhibits. I’m a melanoma survivor so I stopped taking it as soon as I learned that no testing was done to ensure that Januvia wouldn’t promote the growth of any preexisting melanoma cells.

This drug works very poorly for Type 2s who have had diabetes for a while and who do not respond strongly to sulf drugs. It also costs $6 a DAY. The hype being used to sell it is scary, as is the very short 2 year period during which it was tested. It uses a completely new mechanism that involves blocking an enyzme used throughout the body and brain but no testing was done to look at its effects on anything but blood sugar.

It worked extremely well for my blood sugar, but it also after a few months stopped my digestive system cold, gave me horrible sinus headaches, and when I cut myself or tested my fingers it would get all inflammed, which isn’t normal for me. My leucocyte count rose while taking it, too.

Anyway, everything I know about it is on my blog and at Byetta and Januvia