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Why Are They Taking Metformin Off The Market

Metformin

Metformin

Metformin, marketed under the trade name Glucophage among others, is the first-line medication for the treatment of type 2 diabetes,[4][5] particularly in people who are overweight.[6] It is also used in the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome.[4] Limited evidence suggests metformin may prevent the cardiovascular disease and cancer complications of diabetes.[7][8] It is not associated with weight gain.[8] It is taken by mouth.[4] Metformin is generally well tolerated.[9] Common side effects include diarrhea, nausea and abdominal pain.[4] It has a low risk of causing low blood sugar.[4] High blood lactic acid level is a concern if the medication is prescribed inappropriately and in overly large doses.[10] It should not be used in those with significant liver disease or kidney problems.[4] While no clear harm comes from use during pregnancy, insulin is generally preferred for gestational diabetes.[4][11] Metformin is in the biguanide class.[4] It works by decreasing glucose production by the liver and increasing the insulin sensitivity of body tissues.[4] Metformin was discovered in 1922.[12] French physician Jean Sterne began study in humans in the 1950s.[12] It was introduced as a medication in France in 1957 and the United States in 1995.[4][13] It is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system.[14] Metformin is believed to be the most widely used medication for diabetes which is taken by mouth.[12] It is available as a generic medication.[4] The wholesale price in the developed world is between 0.21 and 5.55 USD per month as of 2014.[15] In the United States, it costs 5 to 25 USD per month.[4] Medical uses[edit] Metformin is primarily used for type 2 diabetes, but is increasingly be Continue reading >>

Whats The Story On Metformin For Diabetes?

Whats The Story On Metformin For Diabetes?

Whats the Story on Metformin for Diabetes? Have you had your blood sugar checked lately. Millions of American have elevated blood glucose levels and don't realize it. Doctors prescribe metformin for diabetes. What are the pros and cons? Metformin has become the go-to drug for type 2 diabetes. Its easy to understand why. The drug works to control blood sugar and it is incredibly inexpensive compared to many of the newer diabetes drugs. Of course lifestyle remains the number one most important way to manage this metabolic disease. Metformin for diabetes can enhance the benefit of diet, exercise and other lifestyle changes. Q. I have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Ive been trying to control my blood sugar levels with the help of a nutritionist for about a year now. I am thin, work out regularly and eat really well. Its not enough. My doctor has now prescribed metformin. What are your thoughts on this drug? And do you know of anything else I could try? I am still asymptomatic and feel great. I wish I could help myself through diet and exercise. Q. Dont give up on your good diet and exercise habits! They will help with the effectiveness of your treatment, even if you havent been able to control your blood sugar with them alone. Metformin is a first-line drug for type 2 diabetes, as well as one of the oldest and best-studied. It improves the bodys response to insulin and can be quite effective. In addition to its ability to keep blood sugar down, metformin has also shown promise for its anti-cancer activity ( Acta Biochimica et Biophysica Sinica, online Oct. 7, 2017 ). Metformin Side Effects Can Be Hard to Handle: There are potential side effects, however. The most common are digestive: nausea, stomach ache, indigestion, loss of appetite, diarrhea and flatulence. The m Continue reading >>

Metformin

Metformin

Metformin may rarely cause a serious, life-threatening condition called lactic acidosis. Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease. Your doctor will probably tell you not to take metformin. Also, tell your doctor if you are over 65 years old and if you have ever had a heart attack; stroke; diabetic ketoacidosis (blood sugar that is high enough to cause severe symptoms and requires emergency medical treatment); a coma; or heart or liver disease. Taking certain other medications with metformin may increase the risk of lactic acidosis. Tell your doctor if you are taking acetazolamide (Diamox), dichlorphenamide (Keveyis), methazolamide, topiramate (Topamax, in Qsymia), or zonisamide (Zonegran). Tell your doctor if you have recently had any of the following conditions, or if you develop them during treatment: serious infection; severe diarrhea, vomiting, or fever; or if you drink much less fluid than usual for any reason. You may have to stop taking metformin until you recover. If you are having surgery, including dental surgery, or any major medical procedure, tell the doctor that you are taking metformin. Also, tell your doctor if you plan to have any x-ray procedure in which dye is injected, especially if you drink or have ever drunk large amounts of alcohol or have or have had liver disease or heart failure. You may need to stop taking metformin before the procedure and wait 48 hours to restart treatment. Your doctor will tell you exactly when you should stop taking metformin and when you should start taking it again. If you experience any of the following symptoms, stop taking metformin and call your doctor immediately: extreme tiredness, weakness, or discomfort; nausea; vomiting; stomach pain; decreased appetite; deep and rapid breathing or shortness of breath; dizzi Continue reading >>

Metformin Warnings

Metformin Warnings

For several years now, metformin has been recommended as the first-line drug for Type 2 diabetes by the American Diabetes Association (ADA). As we noted in a post last month, metformin is the most widely prescribed diabetes drug in the world due to its effectiveness, low cost, and low risk of hypoglycemia compared with many other oral drugs and insulin. But to get approval in the United States in 1994, metformin had to overcome safety concerns about lactic acidosis. This rare but extremely serious side effect was found to be too common in a drug related to metformin, phenformin, which was withdrawn from the U.S. market as a result in 1977. So since it was first sold in the United States in 1995, metformin has carried a black box warning — the strongest type of warning that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) can require on a drug label — about the risk of lactic acidosis. Specifically, this warning states that anyone with chronic kidney disease should not take metformin if their serum creatinine level is equal to or above 1.5 mg/dl for men or 1.4 mg/dl for women. Serum creatinine is often used as a marker of kidney function. In theory, people with reduced kidney function may be at greater risk for lactic acidosis as a side effect from metformin, since the drug is broken down by the kidneys. But two separate teams of researchers recently came to the conclusion that the FDA’s black box warning on metformin is too severe, and that millions of people with both diabetes and kidney disease might be missing out on the drug’s benefits as a result. These studies were described in an article published last week by MedPage Today. In a research review published last month by the Journal of the American Medical Association, one group of researchers concluded that the risk Continue reading >>

Why Is Metformin Considered The Drug Of Choice For Type 2 Diabetes?

Why Is Metformin Considered The Drug Of Choice For Type 2 Diabetes?

Gunda Siska, PharmD, has worked in various fields within the pharmaceutical industry as a licensed pharmacist for more than 20 years. She is currently a staff hospital pharmacist assisting nurses and doctors with drug prescribing, administration, and dispensing, as well as independently monitoring and dosing highly toxic and dangerous drugs. For 2 years, she was concurrently a consultant pharmacist for skilled nursing facilities and nursing homes. Dr. Siska is a member of the New Mexico Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine. Follow her on Twitter @GundaSiska Metformin is a medication that I believe is underappreciated by the general public. Many people ttell me that their doctor prescribed this drug for them, but they took themselves off of it, but if they knew what I know about metformin, they would have stayed on the medication. This is what I know: metformin extends life. It’s been proven in animal studies1 and in humans. A prospective observational study of nearly 20,000 people with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and arteriosclerosis found that metformin use was associated with 24% lower all-cause mortality compared to patients who were not taking metformin.2 It is also the number one go-to medication for type 2 diabetes for several years, despite all the new designer medications coming on the market trying to replace it. How does metformin save lives? Mainly through cardioprotection. Metformin reduces cardiovascular risk in humans.3 Most people with T2DM will most likely die from a cardiovascular event, especially if they are not on metformin.4,5,6 Metformin has so many positive effects on the body, no one really knows for sure all the ways it preserves life. It produces modest weight loss in the near term5 and blun Continue reading >>

Actos

Actos

Actos (pioglitazone) is an oral Type 2 diabetes drug that lowers blood sugar by decreasing insulin resistance and reducing the amount of glucose made in the liver. This allows the body to better dispose of excess blood sugar. Typically, the dose starts at 15 or 30 mg and is taken once a day, but some people may require a stronger dose. Doctors can increase the strength of the medicine by 15 mg increments to a maximum of 45 mg daily. However, numerous studies and a review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) link higher dosages and prolonged use to an increased risk of bladder cancer and other serious conditions. Actos is not intended to treat Type 1 diabetes or diabetic ketoacidosis. The drug can be used alone or with other Type 2 diabetes medicines such as metformin. There are two additional types of Actos that combine pioglitazone and metformin: Actoplus Met and Actoplus Met XR (extended release). What Does Actos Treat? Actos is approved to treat Type 2 diabetes in adults by improving glycemic (defined as causing glucose – sugar – in the blood) control. The drug comes in a tablet form to be taken by mouth daily and should be used in combination with diet and exercise. People with Type 2 diabetes do not make or use insulin well. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates the amount of glucose in the blood. It moves blood sugar into cells where it is stored for later use as energy. Type 2 diabetes results in higher than normal levels of glucose because glucose does not enter cells. The body is then unable to use the glucose for energy. Type 2 diabetes is a lifelong (chronic) disease that can develop at any age, including during childhood. However, it mostly occurs in middle-aged and older people. The condition often develops slowly over t Continue reading >>

New Findings About What Metformin Really Does

New Findings About What Metformin Really Does

As many of my readers know, there is no requirement that the companies that sell pharmaceutical drugs provide an accurate explanation of what it is that their drugs do or of how they do it. All that they have to prove is that the drug has an impact on some measurable phenomenon. The company may claim that a drug functions using a mechanism that is later proven to be untrue. This has been the case with the SSRI drugs which it turned out actually work by remodelling the nerves in the hippocampus, NOT by changing levels of serotonin. Metformin, which has been used for decades, is another drug whose effect is well understood--it lowers blood sugar and reduces the amount of insulin needed to lower blood sugar. This has been interpreted to mean that it lowers insulin resistance. But new findings are calling this into question, as we discover that metformin may actually be stimulating insulin release or blocking the liver's release of glucose rather than impacting insulin resistant cell receptors. The first finding is one I stumbled over recently, one which seems to have gone unnoticed by the medical press. It is that metformin appears to boost GLP-1 levels. GLP-1 is an incretin hormone secreted in the gut which stimulates the beta cell to secrete insulin in the presence of high blood sugars. GLP-1 may also lower glucagon production at the same time. While Byetta and Januvia are higly promoted as being incretin drugs, some little known research suggests that metformin may also raise the level of GLP-1 in the body. Enhanced secretion of glucagon-like peptide 1 by biguanide compounds. Yasuda N et al. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2002 Nov 15;298(5):779-84. This was old news, but it may partially explain some of the stomach symptoms people experience with metformin. GLP-1 stops or Continue reading >>

The Diabetes Drug That Could Be An Anti-aging Miracle

The Diabetes Drug That Could Be An Anti-aging Miracle

In a slew of recent flashy endeavors, scientists, academics and exceptionally rich people have taken on the aging process. In 2013, Google launched Calico, its billion-dollar anti-aging research and development arm, which the following year formed a partnership with pharmaceutical giant AbbVie. Meanwhile, another major drug company, Novartis, is developing a patentable form of rapamycin—a biological agent discovered in the soil on Easter Island—which has been shown to boost immune function, and the company hopes it could become the first viable anti-aging pill. But, according to Dr. Nir Barzilai, a scientist based in the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City’s Bronx borough, we might already have the drug we need to slow the aging process—and it’s dirt cheap. Metformin is an old, generic diabetes drug, known for its blood sugar–lowering properties and for being quite safe. It’s common, and it costs about 35 cents per pill. It has also been found to stall the aging process in animal studies. In June, Barzilai, along with academics from the not-for-profit American Federation for Aging Research (AFAR), approached the Food and Drug Administration with an idea: the Targeting Aging With Metformin (TAME) study, to see if metformin could do for humans what it does for animals. It would be the first clinical trial to test if a drug could slow human aging. The FDA said yes, and since that June meeting the media has exploded with excitement over the purported “fountain of youth” drug, with rumors that it could extend human life span up to 120 years. The problem, though, is that no one has agreed to front the capital required to get TAME off the ground. That’s not surprising: There are plenty of reasons Big Pharma won’t fund a study that would m Continue reading >>

Diabetes Medication Metformin: Why Patients Stop Taking It

Diabetes Medication Metformin: Why Patients Stop Taking It

Gretchen Becker, author of The First Year: Type 2 Diabetes: An Essential Guide for the Newly Diagnosed , has been taking metformin for more than 20 years after receiving a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes in 1996. I never had any problems with metformin until I took a pill that I thought was the extended-release version, but it wasnt, Becker told Healthline. Beckers doctor had accidentally prescribed the regular form of metformin. I had very loose bowels for several months until I figured out what the problem was, Becker said. After getting the proper prescription, it took several months for Beckers digestive system to recover. Corinna Cornejo, who received a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes in 2009, told Healthline that her digestive woes didnt start until shed been taking metformin for more than a year. At first, I thought it was a response to dairy, but my doctor eventually switched my prescription to the extended-release version, Cornejo recalled. That has helped, but the side effect has not gone away completely. For some people, however, metformins unpleasant side effect of loose stools provides a much-needed balance to the side effects that can result from other diabetes drugs theyre taking. GLP-1 drugs, like Victoza or Byetta, can cause constipation, explained Robinson. Taking metformin with a GLP-1 drug means they actually complement each other, balancing out those side effects. And for some, metformin simply isnt the right drug. No matter what you do, some patients just dont tolerate the side effects well, said Robinson. Although there are many diabetes drugs on the market today, doctors will likely push metformin first. There has never been as many diabetes treatment options available as there are now, explained Robinson. But doctors look at cost, and metformin is th Continue reading >>

Metformin Makes Headline News

Metformin Makes Headline News

Metformin is the first-line drug of choice in the treatment of type II diabetes. It was first approved in Europe in 1958.1 Americans had to wait until 1994 to legally obtain metformin.1 The holdup in approving metformin goes beyond the FDA. It is an indictment of a political/legal system that will forever cause needless suffering and death unless substantively changed. When Life Extension® informed Americans about drugs like metformin in the 1980s, the FDA did everything in its power to incarcerate me and shut down our Foundation.2 FDA propaganda at the time was that consumers needed to be "protected" against "unproven" therapies. As history has since proven, the result of the FDA's embargo has been unparalleled human carnage. So called "consumer protection" translated into ailing Americans being denied access to therapies that the FDA now claims are essential to saving lives. Today's major problem is not drugs available in other countries that Americans can't access. Instead, it is a political/legal system that suffocates medical innovation. Headline news stories earlier this year touted the anti-cancer effects of metformin, data that Foundation members were alerted to long ago.3 The problem is that it is illegal for metformin manufacturers to promote this drug to cancer patients or oncologists. It's also illegal to promote metformin to healthy people who want to reduce their risk of cancer, diabetes, vascular occlusion, and obesity. This fatal departure from reality continues unabated, as our dysfunctional political/legal system denies information about metformin that could spare countless numbers of lives. Type II diabetics suffer sharply higher rates of cancer4-7and vascular disease.8-11 The anti-diabetic drug metformin has been shown in numerous scientific studies Continue reading >>

Diabetes Drug Could Be Dangerous: Study

Diabetes Drug Could Be Dangerous: Study

A number of patients with diabetes are being given a drug that could kill them, according to researchers in North Carolina. A study on metformin, also sold as Glucophage and Novo-Metformin, says nearly one in four patients could experience dangerous side effects. The study is published in the most current issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Metformin helps the body use insulin and is one of the most common drugs used to treat Type II diabetes, sometimes linked to obesity and called "adult-onset" or "non-insulin dependent" diabetes. There are at least 1.2 million Canadians with diabetes according to Health Canada. More than 90 per cent are Type II. Metformin can cause a side-effect called lactic acidosis, a buildup of lactic acid in the blood that is fatal in half of all cases. The label says it shouldn't be used by patients with kidney disease or by those taking heart medication. A study of metformin patients by the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill found a quarter met that criteria. Fortunately, none of the patients developed lactic acidosis. "It is difficult to determine whether clinicians are aware they are prescribing metformin against a black-box warning," wrote the researchers. "Black-box" refers to the highlighted cautionary information on labels of drugs that have serious side effects. The Canadian Medical Association's guide to prescription drugs lists special precautions for metformin. Metformin is not recommended if you: have impaired kidney or liver function have heart failure are a heavy drinker are pregnant are breast-feeding are over 60 Common reactions are loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting and a metallic taste in the mouth. Lead researcher Cheryl Horlen says several recent European studies have found similar rates of i Continue reading >>

Types Of Diabetes Medications

Types Of Diabetes Medications

Author's Perspective: Most people with diabetes start out taking oral medications (pills) such as metformin (Glucophage) when they are initially diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. But, in my case, I was put on insulin immediately (in the hospital) because my diabetes was so bad. Because I had to inject myself with insulin 4 times a day (and, because I was afraid of needles), I never became comfortable with my insulin shots. Ironically, if I had started out taking a pill like most diabetics, I would have become comfortable taking the pills and I would not have been as motivated to want to get off the medication. In fact, I was so afraid of needles, that I considered getting an insulin pump so that I could avoid the insulin shots. Luckily, for me, my family doctor rejected the idea of me going on an insulin pump. Initially, I didn't see the advantage of taking insulin shots, but, it turned out that it was easier to gradually wean off the insulin because I was able to reduce my dosage one unit at a time from 60 units to 59 units to 58 units and so on. This would have been impossible to do with pills. So, in many ways, being on insulin, actually turned out to be advantageous to me because I was able to slowly reduce the dosage and safely wean off the insulin in 3.5 months. Oral Diabetes Medications Oral pills are the initial and primary type of diabetes medication given to people with Type 2 diabetes. These types of medications help to artificially lower and control blood sugar levels in people whose bodies still produce some insulin (which are the majority of people with Type 2 diabetes). Oral diabetes medications work in one of four ways: Stimulate the pancreas to release more insulin (causing you to gain weight) Stop the liver from releasing stored glycogen into the bloodst Continue reading >>

Fda Drug Safety Communication: Fda Revises Warnings Regarding Use Of The Diabetes Medicine Metformin In Certain Patients With Reduced Kidney Function

Fda Drug Safety Communication: Fda Revises Warnings Regarding Use Of The Diabetes Medicine Metformin In Certain Patients With Reduced Kidney Function

[ 4-8-2016 ] The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is requiring labeling changes regarding the recommendations for metformin-containing medicines for diabetes to expand metformin’s use in certain patients with reduced kidney function. The current labeling strongly recommends against use of metformin in some patients whose kidneys do not work normally. We were asked1,2 to review numerous medical studies regarding the safety of metformin use in patients with mild to moderate impairment in kidney function,3-14 and to change the measure of kidney function in the metformin drug labeling that is used to determine whether a patient can receive metformin. We have concluded our review, and are requiring changes to the labeling of all metformin-containing medicines to reflect this new information. Health care professionals should follow the latest recommendations when prescribing metformin-containing medicines to patients with impaired kidney function. Patients should talk to their health care professionals if they have any questions or concerns about taking metformin. Metformin-containing medicines are available by prescription only and are used along with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. When untreated, type 2 diabetes can lead to serious problems, including blindness, nerve and kidney damage, and heart disease. Metformin-containing medicines are available as single-ingredient products and also in combination with other drugs used to treat diabetes (see FDA Approved metformin-containing Medicines). The current drug labeling strongly recommends against metformin use in some patients whose kidneys do not work normally because use of metformin in these patients can increase the risk of developing a serious and potentially dead Continue reading >>

New Weight Loss Formula: Popular Diabetes Drug Melts Pounds, Studies Show

New Weight Loss Formula: Popular Diabetes Drug Melts Pounds, Studies Show

If the FDA says yes, a major new weight loss drug may hit the market this year. A high-dose formulation of liraglutide, the popular diabetes drug from Novo Nordisk melts up to 10 percent of body mass, studies show. Liraglutide, available in 1.2 mg and 1.8 mg doses as Victoza, is already a huge success for Novo Nordisk. The company has now filed with the FDA seeking approval for a 3.0 mg dose after studies found major weight loss benefits (in conjunction with diet and exercise.) In clinical trials, liraglutide helped those taking it lose 5 to 10 percent of their body mass, according to research published in the International Journal of Obesity. And while this study looked at people with diabetes, a previous study published in the Lancet tested the drug in non-diabetics and found similarly impressive weight loss. In late December, Novo Nordisk filed two submissions for liraglutide, a new drug application (NDA) with the FDA, and a Marketing Authorization Application (MAA) with the European Medicines Agency, according to Drug Discovery & Development. But some folks may not have to wait even that long. In February, Novo Nordisk made the unusual move of targeting Mexico for an initial approval of high-dose liraglutide. And others may not wait at all; while the studies warn against using liraglutide "off-label" for weight loss, it seems certain that patients will seek to use Victoza for that purpose. Liraglutide works by mimicking a hormone known as GLP-1, which slows digestion and stimulates the body's natural production of insulin. Victoza has been very successful for Novo Nordisk, with sales jumping 58 percent in 2012, and climbing an additional 14 percent in the third quarter of 2013. Experts are projecting that liraglutide would have blockbuster potential as a weight loss Continue reading >>

Metformin: What Is It Used For?

Metformin: What Is It Used For?

Metformin is a popular oral diabetes medicine marketed as a generic or under the brand names of Glucophage, Fortamet, Glumetza, Riomet and D-Care DM2. Metformin is also combined with other oral diabetes medicines. Metformin originates from the plant Galega officinalis that was used in medieval times to relieve individuals from frequent urination, a symptom associated with diabetes. Galegine was determined to be the active ingredient of this plant, and its first documented clinical use to lower blood sugar was in 1927. The concern for one severe side effect lactic acidosis in a number of similar medications kept Metformin off the market for a number of years even though Metformin only rarely causes lactic acidosis. The FDA approved Metformin for use in 1998 and declared this medication the first-line treatment for Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in 2012. As a meal is digested in the body, sugar obtained from the food is converted to glucose. Glucose is the form of sugar that appears in the blood. Diabetes Mellitus is a condition in which a patient has a high amount of glucose in the blood. As blood glucose rises after a meal, insulin is normally released into the blood by the pancreas to move glucose from the blood into the cells of the body. Once glucose is inside the cells, it can be used in cellular metabolism or stored as energy. Physiologically, several things contribute to high blood glucose. Diabetic patients can be insensitive to insulin, leaving high amounts of glucose in the blood even when insulin production is normal. Although there is already substantial glucose in the blood, the liver can continue to produce and release additional glucose into the bloodstream. Metformin decreases glucose production by the liver, decrease absorption of glucose in the intestines, a Continue reading >>

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