Question:What is metformin and when is it used?
Answer:Metformin is one of the agents that we use to treat type 2 diabetes. It's actually one of the first agents that we might use, as long as you don't have any known side effects of kidney problems. One of the best effects of metformin is that in addition to lowering blood sugars, it also can promote just a little bit of weight loss. Not a lot, maybe two to three pounds. But that's in contrast to other medications for diabetes which can actually cause weight gain.
What are the some of the side effects, though, that can be caused by metformin? The most common is a little bit of nausea and stomach discomfort when taking them. We know that if you start at a lower dose, maybe around 500 mg a day, and slowly work your way up in the recommendation of your physician, that this drug can be very well tolerated and can be very effective for lowering blood sugars.