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The World in Medicine
May 18, 2011

Choosing Diabetes Drugs

JAMA. 2011;305(19):1953. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.636

Not all drugs used to treat type 2 diabetes are equal in terms of long-term survival, according to a new observational study (Schramm TK et al. Eur Heart J. doi:10.1093/eurheartj/ehr077 [published ahead of print April 6, 2011]).

The study included all Danish residents older than 20 years who had begun taking either single-agent insulin secretagogues (ISs) or metformin between 1997 and 2006—a total of 107 806 people—who were observed for up to 9 years. Compared with metformin treatment, monotherapy with most ISs was associated with a greater risk of death from any cause as well as a greater risk of myocardial infarction, stroke, or death from cardiovascular disease. The ISs gliclazide and repaglinide seem to be associated with a lower risk than the other ISs.