Lixisenatide Side Effects (Lyxumia): Nausea, Headache, Rash

Lixisenatide is a type of GLP-1 receptor agonist drug used to treat type 2 diabetes. 

As a class of medication, GLP-1 receptor agonists help improve blood sugar levels by reducing appetite and impacting different hormones that promote healthy blood sugar levels.

Lixisenatide is available in the European Union under the name Lyxumia and is no longer available in the United States market as of January 1, 2023 (not due to safety issues, according to the manufacturer).

If you’ve been prescribed lixisenatide for your diabetes, you’re probably curious about what the potential side effects are and how to manage them. 

We’ll discuss lixisenatide’s side effects in this article and offer suggestions to help ease them.

What are the side effects of Lixisenatide and how can you reduce them? 

Some of the more common side effects of lixisenatide are listed below:

Nausea and vomiting

Some of the most common side effects of GLP-1 receptor agonists like lixisenatide are gastrointestinal-related. 

Lixisenatide slows gastric emptying, which makes you feel fuller longer. When your digestion is slower, you might develop a feeling of nausea, which is a feeling described as “queasiness” or feeling like you’re going to vomit (throw up). 

Nausea can occur with and without vomiting. If you experience vomiting, you’re more prone to becoming dehydrated from the loss of fluids and electrolytes.

If you experience nausea with or without vomiting, here are some things that might help:

  • Eat smaller meals since large meals might worsen nausea and vomiting.
  • Eat a bland diet such as the BRAT diet, which includes foods like toast, applesauce, and other soft, easy-to-digest foods.
  • Consider using peppermint, either orally or as aromatherapy – it’s proven to help reduce nausea in some studies.
  • Chew ginger candies or sip on ginger ale since ginger is a natural remedy for nausea.
  • Avoid high-fat foods, which slow digestion even more and may worsen nausea.
  • Sip on sports drinks if you’re experiencing vomiting, which can help prevent dehydration and provide some calories.


Diarrhea is when your stool is loose and liquid instead of formed. While everyone experiences diarrhea at times, persistent diarrhea can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances similar to vomiting.

For diarrhea, a diet similar to the one for nausea and vomiting can help (see above). In addition, here are some tips to manage diarrhea.

  • Avoid eating high-fiber foods like raw fruits, vegetables, legumes, some whole grains, nuts, and seeds, which can worsen diarrhea. Soluble fiber can sometimes help with diarrhea (it absorbs water and can thicken stools) and is found in foods like oats, apples without the skin, and avocados.
  • Stay away from caffeine, which can overstimulate your bowels and worsen diarrhea.


The opposite of diarrhea, constipation, is when you have a hard stool that is difficult to pass. 

Some people with constipation might not have a bowel movement for days, or it might be very difficult to have a bowel movement.

To help ease constipation, you can make some lifestyle adjustments such as:

  • Increasing your fiber intake by eating fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, and seeds.
  • Boost your fluid intake.
  • Increase your physical activity level.


If you develop a headache from taking lixisenatide, there are many ways to manage the pain. 

Over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen, naproxen, and ibuprofen can be used to relieve headache pain. Reach out to your healthcare provider to determine which pain reliever is best for you.

In addition to OTC medications, you can help ease and prevent headaches by staying hydrated, avoiding alcohol, and getting adequate sleep.

Pain or discomfort at the injection site

Lixisenatide is an injectable medication, which means you’ll be using a needle to inject it under your skin (not the muscle). 

You might develop pain, a rash, or itchiness at the injection site. If this occurs, here are some things to try to help reduce Lixisenatide’s injection site reactions:

  • Apply ice to irritated skin.
  • Rotate the injection site so you don’t inject the same spot repeatedly. 
  • Clean the injection site before injections.

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How long do Lixisenatide’s side effects last?

Side effects from lixisenatide are usually most prevalent when you begin taking it and after a dose increase.

When you first start taking a medication, side effects typically last a few weeks after you reach your target dose. In most people, side effects will either reduce in severity or go away altogether by then.

Some people might experience side effects the entire time they take lixisenatide. If side effects are severe, your doctor might recommend you stop taking Lixisenatide and switch to another medication.

Are there any long-term side effects of Lyxumia?

The side effects we just reviewed are more common and not very dangerous. There is a chance of developing more severe side effects from taking GLP-1 receptor agonists like lixisenatide, which can cause long-term side effects in some instances.

Some of the rarer, more serious potential side effects of lixisenatide can include:

  • Thyroid cancer
  • Gallbladder problems
  • Pancreatitis (inflammation of your pancreas)
  • Kidney problems due to dehydration

What are the side effects of Lixisenatide in the elderly?

Elderly people are more prone to dehydration and related kidney problems compared to younger patients taking lixisenatide. Dehydration can occur due to persistent vomiting and diarrhea from lixisenatide.

Some signs of dehydration can include:

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Dark-colored urine with a strong odor
  • Reduced urine output (can occur with kidney problems as well as dehydration)
  • Dry mouth
  • Swelling of the feet and ankles (a sign of kidney problems)

In addition, elderly people might be more prone to low blood sugar (which isn’t a common side effect of lixisenatide), especially if they’re taking it with another diabetes medication. 

Signs of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can include:

  • Dizziness 
  • Shakiness
  • Sweating
  • Headache
  • Irritability
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Confusion

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Side effects of stopping Lixisenatide

If you stop taking lixisenatide and don’t replace it with another diabetes medication, the most likely side effect is increased blood sugar levels. 

If you were experiencing side effects from Adylyxin, they’ll likely subside shortly after you discontinue the medication.


  • Lixisenatide is a GLP-1 receptor agonist, a type of medication used to treat type 2 diabetes.
  • The most common side effects of lixisenatide are gastrointestinal problems like diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and constipation. Headache and injection site discomfort are also possible side effects.
  • Side effects of Lyxumia can be reduced through diet changes, natural remedies like using ginger and peppermint for stomach upset, and the use of over-the-counter medications.

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