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Epalrestat is used to delay the progression and to treat early onset diabetic neuropathy (type of nerve damage that occurs in patients with uncontrolled diabetes of long duration).

How it works

Epalrestat belongs to a class of drugs called aldose reductase inhibitors. It reduces the accumulation of sorbitol (excess sugar present in blood and tissues of diabetic patients) in nerves, and relieves numbness/pain of the hands and feet and leg cramp in patients with diabetes neuropathy.

Common side effects

Liver enzyme increased, Back pain, Burning sensation, Itching, Headache, Nausea, Vomiting


Expert advice

  • Always take epalrestat before each meal.
  • Tell your doctor if you are suffering from liver disease or renal impairment or long-standing diabetic neuropathy. 
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding or planning to become pregnant. 
  • Do not consume this drug if you are allergic to epalrestat or any of its ingredients.
  • Do not consume this drug if you have neuropathy due to causes other than diabetes, have severe liver or kidney disorders.
  • Patients with compromised blood flow to calf and feet should not consume this drug.

Frequently asked questions



Content on this page was last updated on 30 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)