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      Durability of initial antidiabetic monotherapy and subsequent treatment adjustment patterns among newly treated type 2 diabetes patients

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          As newly available antidiabetic drugs (ADs) are used more commonly as initial hypoglycemic choice for early stage diabetes patients, there is an urgent need to investigate how these agents may differ in treatment durability relative to metformin. This study aimed to investigate the incidence and risk of treatment adjustment among newly treated type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients receiving an oral AD as initial monotherapy.


          T2DM patients registered in the National Health Insurance Program who were newly prescribed an oral AD were identified. Time to treatment addition or switch to alternative antidiabetic therapy was determined using the Kaplan–Meier survival analysis. Cox proportional hazards regression was performed to estimate the hazard ratio (HR) after adjusting for potential confounding factors.


          The median time to treatment adjustment was shorter for sulfonylureas (SUs), dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, alphaglucosidase (AG) inhibitors, and thiazolidinediones (TZDs) compared to that for metformin. Initiation of therapy with SUs or DPP-4 inhibitors was associated with a significantly higher risk of both treatment addition and switching than with metformin (HR 1.49 versus 1.47 for overall treatment adjustment, respectively). In contrast, among incident users of AG inhibitors or TZDs, only the hazard of switch was substantially increased compared to metformin starters (6.19, 95% confidence interval [CI] 5.77–6.64 and 7.31, 95% CI 6.35–8.42, respectively). When addition and switch events were collectively assessed, the risk of treatment adjustment was significantly elevated in all non-metformin cohorts.


          Our results demonstrated that the durability of metformin as an initial monotherapy was superior to that of other ADs, including newer classes of antidiabetics, and appeared to be more effective in delaying treatment adjustment in real-world clinical practice.

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            Metformin in patients with type 2 diabetes and kidney disease: a systematic review.

            Metformin is widely viewed as the best initial pharmacological option to lower glucose concentrations in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. However, the drug is contraindicated in many individuals with impaired kidney function because of concerns of lactic acidosis.
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              Comparative effectiveness and safety of medications for type 2 diabetes: an update including new drugs and 2-drug combinations.

              Given the increase in medications for type 2 diabetes mellitus, clinicians and patients need information about their effectiveness and safety to make informed choices. To summarize the benefits and harms of metformin, second-generation sulfonylureas, thiazolidinediones, meglitinides, dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists, as monotherapy and in combination, to treat adults with type 2 diabetes. MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were searched from inception through April 2010 for English-language observational studies and trials. The MEDLINE search was updated to December 2010 for long-term clinical outcomes. Two reviewers independently screened reports and identified 140 trials and 26 observational studies of head-to-head comparisons of monotherapy or combination therapy that reported intermediate or long-term clinical outcomes or harms. Two reviewers following standardized protocols serially extracted data, assessed applicability, and independently evaluated study quality. Evidence on long-term clinical outcomes (all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, nephropathy, and neuropathy) was of low strength or insufficient. Most medications decreased the hemoglobin A(1c) level by about 1 percentage point and most 2-drug combinations produced similar reductions. Metformin was more efficacious than the DPP-4 inhibitors, and compared with thiazolidinediones or sulfonylureas, the mean differences in body weight were about -2.5 kg. Metformin decreased low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels compared with pioglitazone, sulfonylureas, and DPP-4 inhibitors. Sulfonylureas had a 4-fold higher risk for mild or moderate hypoglycemia than metformin alone and, in combination with metformin, had more than a 5-fold increased risk compared with metformin plus thiazolidinediones. Thiazolidinediones increased risk for congestive heart failure compared with sulfonylureas and increased risk for bone fractures compared with metformin. Diarrhea occurred more often with metformin than with thiazolidinediones. Only English-language publications were reviewed. Some studies may have selectively reported outcomes. Many studies were small, were of short duration, and had limited ability to assess clinically important harms and benefits. Evidence supports metformin as a first-line agent to treat type 2 diabetes. Most 2-drug combinations similarly reduce hemoglobin A(1c) levels, but some increased risk for hypoglycemia and other adverse events. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

                Author and article information

                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Dove Medical Press
                03 September 2018
                : 14
                : 1563-1571
                [1 ]Department of Clinical Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, Ajou University, Yeongtong-gu, Suwon, Republic of Korea, syshin@ 123456ajou.ac.kr
                [2 ]Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology (RIPST), Ajou University, Yeongtong-gu, Suwon, Republic of Korea, syshin@ 123456ajou.ac.kr
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Sooyoung Shin, College of Pharmacy, Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology, Ajou University, 206, World cup-ro, Yeongtong-gu, Suwon, Gyeonggi-do 16499, South Korea, Tel +82 31 219 3456, Fax +82 31 219 3435, Email syshin@ 123456ajou.ac.kr
                © 2018 Noh et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

                Original Research


                type 2 diabetes, antidiabetic drugs, drug utilization patterns


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