This study, published in the BMJ, aimed to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of metformin use in clinical practice in a large sample of pharmacologically treated patients with type 2 diabetes and different levels of renal function. It looked at men and women with type 2 diabetes, registered in the Swedish National Diabetes Register, and on continuous glucose-lowering treatment with oral hypoglycaemic agents (OHAs) or insulin.
It found that metformin showed lower risk than insulin for CVD and all-cause mortality and slightly lower risk for all-cause mortality compared with other OHA, in these 51,675 patients followed for 4?years. Patients with renal impairment showed no increased risk of CVD, all-cause mortality or acidosis/serious infection. In clinical practice, the benefits of metformin use clearly outbalance the risk of severe side effects.