Metformin is a generic drug which is marketed under the brand name Glucophage. It is considered a first line therapy due to its efficiency, clinical evidence and safety. It is used in the treatment of type 2 Diabetes mostly in overweight people. It is also helpful in the medication of Polycystic ovary syndrome. As well tolerated by patient, it does not show much side effects.
Liver produces glucose. Insulin helps in glucose uptake . Together they show great role in sugar maintenance in the body . In diabetic patients both the processes are disturbed. They show increased glucose production and lower glucose uptake. To help this metformin show good results. It suppresses liver glucose production. It also increases insulin sensitivity, so that the peripheral glucose uptake from gastrointestinal tract is raised. Diabetes type 2 patient generally show three times the normal glucose production rate . The above drug decreases the rate nearly to one third. It shows multiple mechanism. All are not explained completely. It helps in the activation of AMPK enzyme for its inhibitory effect on liver glucose production. This mechanism take place due to improved insulin binding to insulin receptors . It also increases peripheral insulin sensitivity. Thus, results to insulin independent glucose uptake. Moreover it is not metabolized (i.e. it is excreted unchanged in the urine). It can also be used in combination with other medicines like sulfonylureas.
Metformin shows many advantages as compared to other drugs. Such as :
The medicine is very effective with rare and tolerable side effects as described below,
It is available in two strengths i.e. 500mg and 850 mg. Starting with 500 mg twice a day it is slowly raised to 850 mg twice a day.
Overall description shows that Metformin is really safe and effective as compared to other diabetes medicines prescribed .It is available in the United States since may 1995 ,whereas it is being used in other countries for decades .It promotes weight loss ,improves lipid level , decrease hyperglycemia .It also includes normalizing fasting and after meal glucose and glycosylated hemoglobin .Metformin along with sulfonylureas show a good ability to decreases diabetes type 2. Hence it offers clear advantages.