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Indication and Important Limitations of Use for BYETTA® (exenatide) injection

BYETTA is indicated as an adjunct to diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

  • Not a substitute for insulin and should not be used in patients with type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis.
  • Concurrent use with prandial insulin has not been studied and cannot be recommended.
  • BYETTA has been associated with acute pancreatitis, including fatal and non-fatal hemorrhagic or necrotizing pancreatitis, based on postmarketing data. It is unknown whether patients with a history of pancreatitis are at increased risk for pancreatitis while using BYETTA; consider other antidiabetic therapies for these patients.

Important Safety Information for BYETTA


  • BYETTA is contraindicated in patients with prior severe hypersensitivity reactions to exenatide or to any of the product components.

Warnings and Precautions

  • Never Share a BYETTA Pen Between Patients: Pen-sharing poses a risk for transmission of blood-borne pathogens, even if the needle is changed.
  • Pancreatitis: Based on postmarketing data BYETTA has been associated with acute pancreatitis, including fatal and non-fatal hemorrhagic or necrotizing pancreatitis. After initiation and dose increases of BYETTA, observe patients carefully for pancreatitis (including persistent severe abdominal pain, sometimes radiating to the back, with or without vomiting). If pancreatitis is suspected, BYETTA should be discontinued promptly and should not be restarted if pancreatitis is confirmed.
  • Hypoglycemia: Increased risk of hypoglycemia when used in combination with a sulfonylurea (SU) or when used with a glucose-independent insulin secretagogues (eg, meglitinides). Clinicians may consider reducing the SU dose in patients receiving BYETTA to reduce the risk of hypoglycemia. When used with insulin, evaluate and consider reducing the insulin dose in patients at increased risk of hypoglycemia.
  • Renal Impairment: Should not be used in patients with severe renal impairment or end-stage renal disease. Use with caution in patients with renal transplantation or when initiating or escalating the dose in patients with moderate renal failure. Postmarketing reports of altered renal function, including increased serum creatinine, renal impairment, worsened chronic renal failure, and acute renal failure, sometimes requiring hemodialysis and kidney transplantation.
  • Gastrointestinal Disease: Because exenatide is commonly associated with gastrointestinal adverse reactions, BYETTA is not recommended in patients with severe gastrointestinal disease (eg, gastroparesis).
  • Immunogenicity: Patients may develop antibodies to exenatide. In 3 registration trials, antibody levels were measured in 90% of patients, with up to 4% of patients having high-titer antibodies and attenuated glycemic response. If worsening of or failure to achieve adequate glycemic control occurs, consider alternative antidiabetic therapy.
  • Hypersensitivity: Postmarketing reports of serious hypersensitivity reactions (eg, anaphylaxis and angioedema). If this occurs, patients should discontinue BYETTA and other suspect medications and promptly seek medical advice.
  • Macrovascular Outcomes: No clinical studies establishing conclusive evidence of macrovascular risk reduction with BYETTA or any other antidiabetic drug.

Most Common Adverse Reactions (≥5%)

  • 24-week monotherapy trial vs placebo (PBO): nausea (8% vs 0%).
  • Three 30-week combination trials of BYETTA added to metformin (MET) and/or SU vs PBO: nausea (44% vs 18%), vomiting (13% vs 4%), and diarrhea (13% vs 6%), feeling jittery (9% vs 4%), dizziness (9% vs 6%), headache (9% vs 6%), dyspepsia (6% vs 3%).
  • 16-week trial of BYETTA added to thiazolidinedione (TZD) ± MET vs PBO: nausea (40% vs 15%), vomiting (13% vs 1%), dyspepsia (7% vs 1%), diarrhea (6% vs 3%).
  • 30-week trial of BYETTA added to insulin glargine ± MET and/or TZD vs PBO: nausea (41% vs 8%), vomiting (18% vs 4%), diarrhea (18% vs 8%), headache (14% vs 4%), constipation (10% vs 2%), dyspepsia (7% vs 2%), asthenia (5% vs 1%).
  • Hypoglycemia: BYETTA as monotherapy vs PBO, 3.8% (10 mcg) and 5.2% (5 mcg) vs 1.3%; BYETTA vs PBO, with metformin (MET): 5.3% (10 mcg) and 4.5% (5 mcg) vs 5.3%; with SU, 35.7% (10 mcg) and 14.4% (5 mcg) vs 3.3%; with MET + SU, 27.8% (10 mcg) and 19.2% (5 mcg) vs 12.6%; with TZD, 10.7% (10 mcg) vs 7.1%; with insulin glargine, 24.8% (10 mcg) vs 29.5%.
  • Withdrawals: monotherapy trial: 2 of 155 BYETTA patients withdrew due to headache and nausea vs 0 PBO-treated patients. Three 30-week combination trials of BYETTA added to MET and/or SU vs PBO: nausea (3% vs <1%), vomiting (1% vs 0). 16-week trial of BYETTA added to TZD ± MET vs PBO: nausea (9%) and vomiting (5%), with <1% PBO patients withdrawing due to nausea. 30-week trial of BYETTA added to insulin glargine ± MET and/or TZD vs PBO: nausea (5.1% vs 0), vomiting (2.9% vs 0).

Drug Interactions

  • Oral Medications: BYETTA slows gastric emptying and can reduce the extent and rate of absorption of orally administered drugs. Use with caution with medications that have a narrow therapeutic index or require rapid gastrointestinal absorption. Oral medications dependent on threshold concentrations for efficacy, such as contraceptives or antibiotics, should be taken at least 1 hour before BYETTA.
  • Warfarin: Postmarketing reports of increased international normalized ratio (INR) sometimes associated with bleeding with concomitant use of warfarin. Monitor INR frequently until stable upon initiation or alteration of BYETTA.

Use in Specific Populations

  • Pregnant and Nursing Women: Based on animal data, BYETTA may cause fetal harm and should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus. To report drug exposure during pregnancy call 1-800-633-9081. When administered to a nursing woman, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or discontinue BYETTA.
  • Pediatric Patients: Use in pediatric patients is not recommended as safety and effectiveness have not been established.

Please click here for the US Full Prescribing Information and Medication Guide for BYETTA (exenatide) injection 5 mcg and 10 mcg.

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