Difference between Jardiance and Invokana

Diabetes mellitus is one of the common medical condition affecting millions of people all across the globe. What is diabetes? It is a disease that has something to do with the hormone insulin. It’s either the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or it produces insulin but the body cannot effectively use it.

Diabetes has two primary types: type 1 diabetes mellitus or also known as insulin dependent and type 2 diabetes mellitus or also known as non-insulin dependent. Fortunately, there are drugs that help in the management of diabetes mellitus. Some of the drugs commonly used for diabetes mellitus are Jardiance and Invokana.

These two drugs are very much alike but differ in many ways. The differences between Jardiance and Invokana will be discussed in this article. (1, 2, and 3)

Jardiance (Empagliflozin)

Jardiance 10 mg and 25 mg film coated tablet

It is a prescription drug manufactured by Boehringer Ingelheim, which is formulated to lower blood sugar, specifically in people with diabetes mellitus type 2.

Not only does it lower blood sugar, but it also helps reduce cardiovascular death in patients with diabetes type 2 and at the same time suffering from cardiovascular disease.

The pros of taking Jardiance

  • It is effective in lowering the average blood sugar.
  • It is in the form of a pill, which means that it can be easily taken orally.
  • Diabetic patients with pre-existing heart disease can be spared from death secondary to stroke, heart attack, and heart failure.
  • It does not cause a drastic lowering of blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
  • It can help you lose weight. (2, 3, and 4)

What are the cons?

  • It may cause dehydration.
  • It does not have a generic equivalent. It can be purchased through brand name Jardiance, which is a bit expensive.
  • It should not be given to patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus or those with diabetic ketoacidosis.
  • It should not be given to patients with severe kidney problems, especially those undergoing dialysis. (3, 4, and 5)

What are the side effects?

  1. Urinary tract infection
  2. Increase frequency of urination
  3. Low blood sugar
  4. Increase cholesterol level
  5. Nausea
  6. Joint pain
  7. Increased susceptibility of yeast infection in men and women (3, 4, 5, and 6)

What is the possible risk?

  • It can cause low blood pressure in people 65 years old and above, taking blood pressure medication, and those suffering from a kidney-related disease.
  • It can worsen the functions of kidneys in patients with congestive heart failure.
  • It can increase the patient’s susceptibility to urinary tract infection and yeast-related infection. (4, 5, and 6)

Invokana (Canagliflozin)

(Invokana 100 mg and 300 mg tablet.)

It is one of the longest prescribed SGLT2 inhibitors in America. It is manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals.

It has been tested and proven effective in lowering blood sugar, especially when taken in combination with diet and exercise. It should only be given in people with type 2 diabetes mellitus. (6, 7)

What are the pros of taking Invokana?

  • It is effective in lowering blood sugar level.
  • It does not cause hypoglycemia (too low blood sugar level).
  • Only one pill a day is taken (before meal). (6, 7)

What are the cons?

  • It should not be given to people with severe kidney problems.
  • It might increase the level of cholesterol.
  • You will be susceptible to urinary tract infection, yeast infection, and broken bones.
  • It should not be given to people who are heavy drinkers.
  • It could increase the possibility of leg and foot amputation. People who are taking Invokana should inform their doctor if they notice any abnormalities in their lower extremities. (6, 7, and 8)

What are the side effects?

  • Yeast infection in both men and women
  • Increased thirst and frequency of urination
  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Stomachache
  • Vaginal itching (8, 9)

What is the possible risk?

  • It may lead to leg and foot amputation, especially in patients with diabetic foot ulcers and nerve problems.
  • It can lower blood pressure
  • It can increase the possibility of kidney damage, especially in patients with a history of kidney damage.
  • It can increase the acidity and formation of ketones in the blood leading to diabetic ketoacidosis.
  • Increase the susceptibility of urinary tract infection and yeast infection. (6, 7, and 8)
Diabetes is managed using drugs and lifestyle modification

Jardiance Vs Invokana

Point of comparisonJardianceInvokana
Indication Type 2 diabetes mellitusType 2 diabetes mellitus
Pros
  • Lowers average blood sugar
  • Easy to take
  • Prevents the possibility of heart failure and stroke
  • Helps you lose weight
  • Lowers blood sugar
  • Does not cause too much lowering of blood sugar
  • One pill a day is enough to manage blood sugar throughout the day (9, 10, and 11)
Cons
  • Dehydration
  • A bit expensive
  • Do not give to patient with diabetes type 1, ketoacidosis, and severe kidney problems
  • Can increase cholesterol level
  • Not to be given to people with severe kidney problem
  • Increases susceptibility to yeast infection, UTI, and broken bones
  • Not to be given to heavy alcohol drinkers
  • Increases the possibility of leg and foot amputation
Side effects
  • UTI
  • Nausea
  • Severely low blood sugar
  • Increase the frequency of urination
  • Susceptibility to yeast infection
  • Increase cholesterol (11, 12, and 13)
  • Susceptibility to yeast infection
  • Nausea
  • Constipation
  • Excessive thirst and increased frequency of urination
  • Vaginal itching
  • Stomachache (11, 12, and 13)

How are Jardiance and Invokana similar?

They are both SGLT2 inhibitors, which means that they block SGLT2 protein in the kidneys thereby preventing the kidneys to reabsorb glucose.

As a result, the number of sugar in the bloodstream will be reduced significantly as it is expelled in the urine.

It is the reason why the patient feels thirsty and lightheaded when taking Jardiance and Invokana.

Hence, the patients are highly encouraged to increase their fluid intake to prevent dehydration. Both drugs can increase ketones in the blood and if not managed immediately could lead to diabetic ketoacidosis, which is a deadly condition. The patient could die from it.

There are thousands of lawsuits filed against the manufacturers of SGLT2 inhibitors over its dangerous effects to the body. As of August 2018, there is a recorded 1,000 active Invokana lawsuit in the New Jersey District. Health care professionals are switching their patient’s drugs from Invokana to Jardiance because of the said lawsuit.

Note : There is also a debate on this discussion claiming that – Common diabetes drug does not harm bones, study reassures ( reference )

Diabetes is a condition that should not be taken lightly. It is a serious condition that requires proper management. A part of diabetic management is taking the drug on time and as prescribed by the doctor.

Just because you feel well does not mean you can stop taking the drug. Your diabetic medication aims to keep your blood sugar level consistent.

It is important to religiously take your medicine to avoid complications, which may cause your life. (12, 13, 14, and 15)

References:

  1. https://medlineplus.gov/diabetes.html
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health-news/FDA-approves-jardiance-type-2-diabetes-080414#1
  3. https://www.goodrx.com/blog/new-diabetes-treatment-approved-jardiance/
  4. https://www.jardiance.com/diabetes-type-2-faq/
  5. https://www.invokana.com/about-invokana/what-is-invokana
  6. https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-163874/invokana-oral/details
  7. https://bodyandhealth.canada.com/drug/getdrug/invokana
  8. https://www.rxlist.com/invokana-drug.htm
  9. https://www.drugs.com/compare/invokana-vs-jardiance
  10. https://www.iodine.com/compare/jardiance-vs-invokana
  11. https://www.consumersafety.org/news/jardiance-vs-invokana-vs-farxiga/
  12. https://www.bloodsugar101.com/sglt-2-inhibitors
  13. https://www.druginjurylaw.com/invokana-farxiga-jardiance-sglt2-drugs-diabetic-ketoacidosis-heart-attacks-kidney-failures-strokes/
  14. https://www.canadianinsulin.com/articles/jardiance-vs-invokana/
  15. https://www.medpagetoday.com/primarycare/diabetes/67671

Published by Dr. Rajesh MD under Uncategorized.
Article was last reviewed on January 8th, 2022.

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