Home > Metformin for diabetes
Make sure you know about each of the medicines you take. This includes why you take it, how to take it, what you can expect while you're taking it, and any warnings about the medicine.
The information provided here is general. So be sure to read the information that came with your medicine. If you have any questions or concerns, talk to your pharmacist or doctor.
Metformin is a medicine used to treat prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes. It helps control your blood sugar. It is also used to treat polycystic ovarian syndrome.
Metformin works very well and is generally safe.
Here are some examples of metformin. For each item in the list, the generic name is first, followed by any brand names.
Sometimes metformin is combined with other diabetes medicine.
This is not a complete list.
When they first start taking metformin or start taking a larger dose, some people feel sick to their stomach or have diarrhea for a short time.
Over time, blood levels of vitamin B12 can decrease in some people who take metformin. Your body needs this B vitamin to make blood cells and to keep your nervous system healthy. If you have been taking metformin for more than a few years, ask your doctor if you need a B12 blood test to measure the amount of vitamin B12 in your blood.
All medicines can cause side effects. Many people don't have side effects. And minor side effects sometimes go away after a while.
But sometimes side effects can be a problem or can be serious.
If you're having problems with side effects, talk to your doctor. He or she may be able to lower your dose or change to a different medicine. Don't suddenly stop taking your medicine without talking to your doctor first.
Always be sure you get specific information on the medicine you're taking. For a full list of side effects, check the information that came with the medicine you're using. If you have questions, talk to your pharmacist or doctor.
Cautions for metformin include the following:
Always tell your doctor or pharmacist about all the medicines you take. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, herbs, and supplements. That information will help prevent serious problems.
Always be sure you get specific information on the medicine you're taking. For a full list of warnings, check the information that came with the medicine you're using. If you have questions, talk to your pharmacist or doctor.
Other Works Consulted
American Diabetes Association (2017). Standards of medical care in diabetes-2017. Diabetes Care, 40(Suppl 1): S1-S135. http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/40/Supplement_1. Accessed December 15, 2016.
ByHealthwise StaffPrimary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family MedicineKathleen Romito, MD - Family MedicineSpecialist Medical ReviewerTheresa O'Young, PharmD - Clinical PharmacyDavid C.W. Lau, MD, PhD, FRCPC - Endocrinology
Current as ofMarch 21, 2017
Current as of:
March 21, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Theresa O'Young, PharmD - Clinical Pharmacy & David C.W. Lau, MD, PhD, FRCPC - Endocrinology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
6051 US Hwy. 49
Hattiesburg, MS 39401
CONNECT WITH FORREST HEALTH
Notice of Privacy Practices · PUBLIC RECORDS REQUEST · FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE · NON-DISCRIMINATION NOTICE
REQUEST FROM LAW ENFORCEMENT FOR RELEASE OF PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION 6051 US HIGHWAY 49, HATTIESBURG MS 39401 · 601-288-7000 · © FORREST HEALTH · ALL RIGHTS RESERVED ·