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 >>
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 >>
Here’s Why Doctors Have Stopped Prescribing Metformin
We are quickly approaching the day when people diagnosed with Type II Diabetes can kiss goodbye to their expensive pills and annoying needles and test strips. This is thanks to a breakthrough from a Sri Lankan researcher, a specialist in endocrinology with 23 years’ experience, that is going to change everything we thought we knew about how to treat Type II Diabetes... No more needles! Would you be willing to try a "Delicious Dish"or even a "Miracle Smoothie" that could solve the problem of diabetes naturally? Mr. Michel Dempsey, in a brave (and lucky) attempt to save his wife from diabetes discovered a Sri Lankan tribe that has 0 cases of diabetes or pre diabetes. Against all odds he was able, with the help of a Sri Lankan researcher from the university of Peradeniya, to develop a natural treatment to reverse diabetes using the exact same ingredients the tribe has been consuming for decades. He said that he just couldn't see the mother of his 3 children unable to cast off the shackles of diabetes. He wanted to find a better future for her. Now, several years of research, study and experiments later, Chaminda, the Sri Lankan researcher, has discovered a surprisingly simple way to stop diabetes and even reverse it, giving you back the life you had before. The method involves doing away with the foods that are making the problem worse, and replacing them with ingredients and superfood that has doctors baffled. This new method was met with harsh criticism from the medical community and pharmaceutical companies, but he was never criticised by those who actually try it; most of them experienced success in just a few weeks. Michel says that this method has proven results, and these results can speak for themselves. By now you’re probably wondering why you’ve never heard Continue reading >>
Metformin For Diabetes
Take metformin just after a meal or with a snack. The most common side-effects are feeling sick, diarrhoea and tummy (abdominal) pain. These symptoms usually pass after the first few days of treatment. Keep your regular appointments with your doctor and clinics. This is so your progress can be checked. About metformin Type of medicine A biguanide antidiabetic medicine Used for Type 2 diabetes mellitus Also called Bolamyn®; Diagemet®; Glucient®; Glucophage®; Metabet®; Sukkarto® Available as Tablets and modified-release tablets; oral liquid medicine; sachets of powder Insulin is a hormone which is made naturally in your body, in the pancreas. It helps to control the levels of sugar (glucose) in your blood. If your body does not make enough insulin, or if it does not use the insulin it makes effectively, this results in the condition called sugar diabetes (diabetes mellitus). People with diabetes need treatment to control the amount of sugar in their blood. This is because good control of blood sugar levels reduces the risk of complications later on. Some people can control the sugar in their blood by making changes to the food they eat but, for other people, medicines like metformin are given alongside the changes in diet. Metformin allows the body to make better use of the lower amount of insulin which occurs in the kind of diabetes known as type 2 diabetes. Metformin can be given on its own, or alongside insulin or another antidiabetic medicine. There are a number of tablets available which contain metformin in combination with one of these other antidiabetic medicines (brands include Jentadueto®, Competact®, Komboglyze®, Janumet®, and Eucreas®). Taking a combination tablet like these can help to reduce the total number of tablets that need to be taken each d Continue reading >>
Why Isn’t Metformin Prescribed More?
Since its debut in the United States in 1995, metformin has become the most popular oral drug for Type 2 diabetes in the country — and the rest of the world. Current guidelines by the American Diabetes Association state that unless there are special risks in a particular person, metformin should be the first drug prescribed to people with Type 2 diabetes. Yet perhaps due in part to its popularity, metformin isn’t free of controversy. As we’ve discussed previously here at Diabetes Flashpoints, there are concerns about prescribing metformin in people with kidney disease, and some doctors even question whether metformin deserves its status as the universally recommended first-line drug for Type 2 diabetes. In addition, there’s debate about whether metformin should be taken by more people with prediabetes. A recent study sought to explore the reasons why metformin isn’t prescribed as widely as clinical guidelines suggest it should be. Published last month in the journal Therapeutic Advances in Chronic Disease, the study notes that only roughly 65% of people with newly diagnosed Type 2 diabetes are prescribed metformin — and that over time, this number drops to just 25% of people with the condition. As noted in a Pharmacy Times article on the study, researchers from the University of Colorado put together focus groups of relevant people — doctors, pharmacists, and other medical personnel — to ask about their perceptions regarding metformin. Based on these focus groups, the researchers found that three main factors affected how doctors prescribed metformin: concerns about when to start the drug, concerns about the drug’s known risks, and whether procedures were in place to notice and deal with any adverse reactions caused by the drug. Based on the focus grou Continue reading >>
Metastudy Confirms Metformin Appropriate Treatment For Prediabetes
A study that reviewed several previous studies about the impact of using metformin on the progression of prediabetes to diabetes confirms that yes, people with prediabtes who take metformin end up with better blood sugars after 3 years than those who don't and are therefore less likely to be diagnosed with full-blown diabetes. This isn't original research, it's just a look at the major studies that have examined the impact of metformin on prediabetes. But because I hear from so many people with prediabetes whose doctors won't give them any help at all, I though it worth a look. Treating prediabetes with metformin: Systematic review and meta-analysis Muriel Lilly, Can Fam Physician Vol. 55, No. 4, April 2009, pp.363 - 369 The key issue to remember here is that the concept that "prediabetes" progresses to "diabetes" which treats the two conditions as if they were separate diseases is flawed. In fact, the medical definition of "diabetes" is completely arbitrary. A committee years ago chose some blood sugar test results and defined them as "diabetes." They could have--and many argue should have--chosen different test result numbers. But they chose the ones they did mainly, their own documentation showed, to diagnose people with diabetes as late as possible, because of the severe penalties the American medical system imposes on people who have pre-existing conditions. You can read about how the diagnostic standards for diabetes were set HERE. "Prediabetes" was also defined arbitrarily at the same time as "diabetes" was defined and as has been the case with diabetes, the definition has changed over the years. But what you, the person with abnormal blood sugar, need to understand is that there's no sudden change in your health that happens when you get an official diabetes dia Continue reading >>
The Risks Of Treating Diabetes With Drugs Are Far Worse Than The Disease
Drugs in type 2 diabetics will nearly universally cause more damage than good Drugs used to lower blood sugar may increase your risk of death from all causes by 19 percent, and your risk of cardiovascular mortality by 43 percent You can prevent, treat and even reverse type 2 diabetes by making straightforward lifestyle changes By Dr. Mercola Nearly 26 million Americans have diabetes, and up to 95 percent of these cases are type 2 diabetes. Unlike type 1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune disease that shuts down your body's insulin production, type 2 diabetes is directly caused by lifestyle. Whereas type 1 diabetics need to inject insulin several times a day to stay alive, type 2 diabetics do NOT need drugs. In fact, taking drugs for type 2 diabetes can be far worse than the disease itself! Diabetes Drugs Increase Your Risk of Death Drugs are widely prescribed for type 2 diabetics to help lower blood sugar levels, but a new meta-analysis of 13 randomized controlled trials involving more than 33,000 people showed that this treatment is not only ineffective, it's dangerous as well. Treatment with glucose-lowering drugs actually showed the potential to increase your risk of death from heart-related, and all other causes. "The overall results of this meta-analysis do not show a benefit of intensive glucose lowering treatment on all cause mortality or cardiovascular death. A 19% increase in all cause mortality and a 43% increase in cardiovascular mortality cannot be excluded." Lessons Learned from Avandia: Diabetes Drugs Can be Deadly Avandia (rosiglitazone) is the poster child for what is wrong with the drug treatment of type 2 diabetes. After hitting the market in 1999, a 2007 study in the New England Journal of Medicine linked it to a 43 percent increased risk of heart attac Continue reading >>
Glyburide And Metformin
Pronunciation: GLYE bure ide and met FOR min Brand: Glucovance Glucovance 1.25 mg-250 mg What is the most important information I should know about glyburide and metformin? You should not use this medicine if you have severe kidney disease or are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis (call your doctor for treatment with insulin). If you need to have any type of x-ray or CT scan using a dye that is injected into your veins, you will need to temporarily stop taking glyburide and metformin. Some people develop lactic acidosis while taking metformin. Get emergency medical help if you have even mild symptoms such as: muscle pain or weakness, numb or cold feeling in your arms and legs, trouble breathing, stomach pain, nausea with vomiting, slow or uneven heart rate, dizziness, or feeling very weak or tired. What is glyburide and metformin? Glyburide and metformin is a combination of two oral diabetes medicines that help control blood sugar levels. Glyburide and metformin is used to treat type 2 diabetes. This medicine is not for treating type 1 diabetes. Glyburide and metformin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking glyburide and metformin? You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to glyburide or metformin, or: if you have severe kidney disease; if you are also using bosentan (to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension); or if you are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis (call your doctor for treatment with insulin). If you need to have any type of x-ray or CT scan using a dye that is injected into your veins, you will need to temporarily stop taking glyburide and metformin. Some people taking metformin develop a serious condition called lactic acidosis. This may be more likely Continue reading >>
How Metformin Is Used For Fertility
Metformin is an insulin-sensitizing drug primarily used to treat diabetes, but it can also be used for fertility. Women with PCOS may benefit from taking metformin alone, along with Clomid, or even during IVF treatment. Exactly how metformin improves fertility is unclear. While metformin may be used for the treatment of infertility, it is not a fertility drug. In fact, using it to treat infertility is considered an off-label use. (In other words, pregnancy achievement is not the original intended purpose of this drug.) What is this medication? And how might it help you conceive? What Is Metformin? To understand what metformin does, you first need to know what insulin resistance is. Many women with PCOS have insulin resistance. Insulin resistance is when the body's cells stop reacting to normal levels of insulin. They become less sensitive, or resistant. As a result, the body thinks that there is not enough insulin in the system. This triggers the production of more insulin than your body needs. There seems to be a connection between insulin and the reproductive hormones. While no one is quite sure exactly how the two connect, insulin levels seem to lead to increased levels of androgens. Men and women have androgens, but androgens are typically thought of as "male hormones." High androgen levels lead to PCOS symptoms and problems with ovulation. Metformin and other insulin-sensitizing medications lower excess levels of insulin in the body. Besides metformin, rosiglitazone and pioglitazone are other insulin-sensitizing drugs that may be used to treat PCOS. Why Is Metformin Used to Treat PCOS? There are several reasons why your doctor may prescribe metformin when treating your PCOS, some of them fertility related: Insulin Resistance As stated above, insulin resistance is c Continue reading >>
Years Of Taking Popular Diabetes Drug Tied To Risk Of B12 Deficiency
(Reuters Health) – - People taking metformin, a common type 2 diabetes medication, for several years may be at heightened risk of vitamin B12 deficiency and anemia, according to a new analysis of long-term data. Metformin helps to control the amount of sugar, or glucose, in the blood by reducing how much glucose is absorbed from food and produced by the liver, and by increasing the body’s response to the hormone insulin, according to the National Institutes of Health. “Metformin is the most commonly used drug to treat type 2 diabetes, so many millions of people are taking it, usually for a prolonged period (many years),” said senior study author Dr. Jill P Crandall of Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, by email. “Smaller numbers of people take metformin for prevention of diabetes or treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome,” Crandall told Reuters Health. The researchers used data from the Diabetes Prevention Program and the Diabetes Prevention Program Outcomes Study, which followed participants at high risk for type 2 diabetes for more than 10 years. The study began with more than 3,000 people age 25 years and older with high blood sugar. The participants were randomly assigned to receive either 850 milligrams of metformin twice daily, placebo medication or an intensive lifestyle program than did not include medication. For the new analysis only those taking placebo or metformin were considered, and about 50 participants were excluded after having weight-loss surgery, which would affect their diabetes outcomes. During follow-up, the participants provided blood samples at the five- and 13-year points. Using these blood samples, the researchers found that at year five, average B12 levels were lower in the metformin group than the placebo group Continue reading >>
Diabetes Drug That Could Help Us All Live Longer: Doctors Say It Could Also Stave Off Cancer
A drug widely prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes could help us all live longer, a study says. Research suggests metformin, which controls glucose levels, may also stave off cardiovascular disease and cancer – whether someone has diabetes or not. Scientists who studied more than 180,000 people found a ‘small but statistically significant improvement in survival’ in those taking metformin, compared with those given older anti-diabetic drugs and a group without diabetes. Scroll down for video However, experts said the five-and-a-half year follow-up period was relatively short, considering the complications of diabetes get worse over time and are linked with a shorter lifespan. Lead author Professor Craig Currie, from Cardiff University’s School of Medicine, said further research into the effects of metformin on healthy people was merited, particularly as it had negligible side effects. The drug costs a little over 10p a day for the highest prescribed dose. He said: ‘Patients treated with metformin had a small but statistically significant improvement in survival compared with non-diabetics, whereas those treated with sulphonylureas had a consistently reduced survival compared with non-diabetic patients. 'Surprisingly, the findings indicate that this cheap and widely prescribed diabetic drug may have beneficial effects not only on patients with diabetes but also for people without. ‘Metformin has been shown to have anti-cancer and anti-cardiovascular disease benefits. It can also reduce pre-diabetics’ chances of developing the disease by a third.’ But he said patients with type 2 diabetes would eventually see their health deteriorate, regardless of what drug they took. ‘People lose on average around eight years from their life expectancy after developing Continue reading >>
Metformin For Diabetes
Information about this medicine What are the most important things you need to know about your medicines? Make sure you know about each of the medicines you take. This includes why you take it, how to take it, what you can expect while you're taking it, and any warnings about the medicine. The information provided here is general. So be sure to read the information that came with your medicine. If you have any questions or concerns, talk to your pharmacist or doctor. Why is metformin used? Metformin is a medicine used to treat prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes. It helps control your blood sugar. It is also used to treat polycystic ovarian syndrome. Metformin works very well and is generally safe. What are some examples of metformin? Here are some examples of metformin. For each item in the list, the generic name is first, followed by any brand names. metformin (Glucophage) long-acting metformin (Glumetza) Sometimes metformin is combined with other diabetes medicine. Avandamet is a combination of metformin and rosiglitazone. Janumet is a combination of metformin and sitagliptin. Jentadueto is a combination of metformin and linagliptin. This is not a complete list. What about side effects? When they first start taking metformin or start taking a larger dose, some people feel sick to their stomach or have diarrhea for a short time. Over time, blood levels of vitamin B12 can decrease in some people who take metformin. Your body needs this B vitamin to make blood cells and to keep your nervous system healthy. If you have been taking metformin for more than a few years, ask your doctor if you need a B12 blood test to measure the amount of vitamin B12 in your blood. General information on side effects All medicines can cause side effects. Many people don't Continue reading >>
Metformin: Is It Really The Best Treatment For Pcos?
If you suffer from diabetes, or have ever had a close friend or family member who was a diabetic, you might be familiar with the name of a drug called Metformin. It is not the only medication prescribed for diabetes, but it is one of the more common ones, and in many cases it yields results. According to the National Library of Medicine, Metformin is a drug often used to treat Type 2 diabetes. And the reason for this is clear: This medication has shown results in controlling the amount of glucose in your blood, which can be effective in managing or stabilizing a diabetic condition. The problem is that Metformin is not only prescribed for diabetes. Because of its effect on blood glucose, many doctors also give it to women suffering from PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome). This condition is closely linked to Insulin Resistance, the inability of the body to properly use glucose form the blood. But this medication was not necessarily made to be given to those who suffer with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) and the side effects can far outweigh the potential efficacy. Metformin: Hazardous to Your Health? While the Mayo Clinic reports that Metformin is often administered to PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) patients—despite the fact that it is not approved for this use—the drug comes with a variety of potential side effects that any prospective user should know about in advance. Some of them are relatively innocuous, such as gas or stomach pain, but there is also a reported risk of liver damage and moderate to severe infections. These side effects might be easier to overlook if the drug were actually intended for use in PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Patients), but its label gives no indication that this is its intended use. But not to worry: There is a better way to combat Continue reading >>
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Forget The Blood Of Teens. This Pill Promises To Extend Life For A Nickel A Pop
Nir Barzilai has a plan. It’s a really big plan that might one day change medicine and health care as we know it. Its promise: extending our years of healthy, disease-free living by decades. And Barzilai knows about the science of aging. He is, after all, the director of the Institute for Aging Research at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx. And, as such, he usually talks about his plan with the caution of a seasoned researcher. Usually. Truth is, Barzilai is known among his colleagues for his excitability—one author says he could pass as the older brother of Austin Powers—and sometimes he can’t help himself. Like the time he referred to his plan—which, among other things, would demonstrate that human aging can be slowed with a cheap pill—as “history-making.” In 2015, he stood outside of the offices of the Food and Drug Administration, flanked by a number of distinguished researchers on aging, and likened the plan to a journey to “the promised land.” Last spring, Barzilai traveled to the Vatican to discuss the plan at a conference on cellular therapies. It was the second time he’d been invited to the conference, which is a pretty big deal in the medical world. At the last one, in 2013, he appeared alongside a dwarf from Ecuador, a member of a community of dwarfs whose near immunity to diabetes and cancer has attracted the keen interest of researchers. The 2016 conference featured a number of the world’s top cancer scientists and included addresses from Pope Francis and Joe Biden. That Barzilai was invited was a sign not only of his prominence in his field but also of how far aging research, once relegated to the periphery of mainstream science, has come in recent years. That progress has been spurred by huge investments from Sil Continue reading >>
Why Doctors In The Know No Longer Prescribe Metformin
A discovery by an Austin-based doctor may change how Type II Diabetes is treated and could even be a cure. Dr. Marlene Merritt suffered from high blood sugar for years and was determined to find a natural solution. “My motivation,” she says, “was to cast off the shackles of the daily monitoring, the shots and pills, and the drug side effects. I wanted to live a normal life again.” After two years of research and trial and error experiments, Dr. Marlene Merritt hit upon a practical diet and exercise regimen that doesn’t just control Type II Diabetes but actually reverses it. While the regimen eliminates a few foods, it most importantly adds a single food that has shown to have a big impact on the disease. The announcement of her discovery has sent shockwaves through the medical community, with some progressive doctors enthusiastically embracing it, and many conventional doctors taking a “wait and see” approach. Within weeks of adopting her own regimen, Dr. Merritt’s condition completely reversed. “It was just gone, and I had my life back,” she says. I then prescribed this drug-free solution to my diabetic patients and, in most cases, they too saw success in a matter of weeks.” Despite the regimen’s effectiveness, medical journals have been slow to publish her findings. And Dr. Merritt suspects the reluctance is due to the outsized influence of the pharmaceutical industry, which stands to lose billions of dollars on lost drug sales. The makers of Metformin, one of several drugs Dr. Merritt’s natural regimen would replace, had no comment. All diabetes drug sales are expected to reach $32 billion in 2017, according to industry analyst, Morder Intelligence. Dr. Merritt says “Diabetics need to know about this safer option.” To get the word out, s Continue reading >>