Controversies in Internal Medicine
August 11/25, 2003

Insulin and Oral Hypoglycemic Agents Should Not Be Used in Combination in the Treatment of Type 2 Diabetes

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Medicine, Maricopa Medical Center, Phoenix, Ariz (Dr Westphal), and Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Ariz (Dr Palumbo). The authors have no relevant financial interest in this article.




Copyright 2003 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2003

Arch Intern Med. 2003;163(15):1783-1785. doi:10.1001/archinte.163.15.1783

CURRENT TREATMENT paradigms for type 2 diabetes mellitus usually relegate insulin to the position of a last option, for patients in whom monotherapy or combination therapy with oral agents has failed. When insulin is used in this scheme, the common practice is to add it to the oral agent regimen rather than use it by itself. However, this treatment approach does not recognize the natural course of type 2 diabetes and the importance of tight glycemic control. Very often, less than optimal glycemic control is the consequence of maintaining oral agents in the management of type 2 diabetes.