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Risks of sulfonylurea drugs in the treatment of diabetes mellitus

18.01.2006


Sulfonylurea drugs, used in the treatment of patients with diabetes mellitus to lower blood sugar levels, have been suspected since the 1970s of increasing cardiovascular mortality as well.



In this careful study, some 5800 patients treated with pills for their diabetes were monitored for an average of about 5 years. Patients who were prescribed a sulfonylurea drug (chlorpropamide, tolbutamide or glyburide) experienced higher mortality rates than those who received metformin. Mortality from all causes and deaths attributable to heart attacks were both higher among patients taking sulfonylureas. Patients taking higher doses and those with better prescription compliance were more likely to die than those prescribed lower doses or who took less of their medication.

Jeffrey A. Johnson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ualberta.ca
http://www.cmaj.ca/pressrelease/pg169.pdf
http://www.cmaj.ca/pressrelease/pg185.pdf

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