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Metformin

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Metformin

Metformin review





Metformin is a generic form of the drug metformin hydrochloride, which comes in the brand names Fortamet, Glucovance, Riomet, Glumetza, Diabex, and Diaformin. It is given for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, especially when that disease is accompanied by obesity and insulin resistance. It is an oral drug, one of only two oral anti-diabetics available, and is the most widely prescribed anti-diabetic treatment in the United States. It has also been proven effective in reducing some complications of diabetes such as heart disease, cholesterol, and elevated triglyceride levels.

One serious potential side effect of Metformin is lactic acidosis. This is a very rare side effect and occurs in those with disorders of the kidney or liver or with congestive heart failure. If you develop any of the symptoms of lactic acidosis, including weakness, increased sleepiness, slow heart rate, feeling cold, muscle pain, shortness of breath, stomach pain, lightheadedness, and fainting, you may be experiencing lactic acidosis and should contact your doctor immediately. You should not use this medication if you are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis; insulin is safer in that situation. You should consult with your doctor if you are in any of the above risk groups.

Other common side effects include gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea, abdominal cramps, flatulence, indigestion, headache, nausea, and vomiting. Other side effects can include abnormal stools, weakness, irritability, dizziness, lightheadedness, drowsiness, rash, sweating, flu symptoms, sweating, seizures, flushing, and irregular heartbeat. Severe hypoglycemia is very rare with Metaformin treatment, but can cause you to lapse into a coma. Metaformin does not cause weight gain, and in some cases has been known to cause weight loss. It is also the only diabetes drug that is not associated with increased risk in people with heart failure. Metformin is often prescribed along with the drug rosiglitazone, which treats insulin resistance.

You may be more likely to experience high blood sugar if you take Metformin with other drugs that can raise blood sugar. Some of these can include isoniazad, water pills, steroids, Compazine, thyroid medicine, contraceptive pills or other hormones, seizure medications, and diet pills. You can experience low blood sugar if you take Metformin with drugs that lower blood sugar, including nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), aspirin or other salicyclates, including Pepto-Bismol, sulfa drugs, MAO inhibitors, beta-blockers, and probenecids.

Metformin should not be given to women who are pregnant, as abnormal glucose levels are associated with a higher risk of birth defects. Insulin should be used during pregnancy instead. No studies have been done to demonstrate the safety of Metformin while nursing, so it is recommended that insulin be used instead during this time. Metformin is considered safe in pediatric patients between the ages of 10 and 16 years, though not in younger patients. It is considered safe in patients over the age of 65, but since these patients are at higher risk for kidney, lung, and liver disorders, the functions of those organs should be tested before prescribing Metformin to older patients.

Metformin has the following structural formula:

Chemical structure of metformin


• Molecular formula of metformin is C4H11N5
• Chemical IUPAC Name is 1-(diaminomethylidene)-3,3-dimethyl-guanidine
• Molecular weight is 129.164 g/mol
Metformin available : 500mg tablets, 750mg tablets, 850mg tablets, 1000mg tablets

Brand name(s): Fortamet, Glucophage, Glucophage SR, Glucophage XR, Glycon, Riomet

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