Metformin is a hypoglycemic drug from the biguanide group, which action is aimed at reducing blood glucose levels. The effectiveness of the drug does not depend on the time of administration, i.e. it is effective both on an empty stomach and after a meal. Metformin does not activate insulin production and does not lead to a hypoglycemic state.
There are 3 mechanisms of action of this antidiabetic drug:
The first mechanism of action is aimed at the creation of glucose in the liver by slowing down glycogenolysis and gluconeogenesis.
The second mechanism of action is aimed at increasing muscle sensitivity to insulin, which allows glucose to be better absorbed and further exploited by peripheral tissues. Reduces the absorption of glucose in the small intestine.
The third mechanism of action is aimed at activation of glycogen synthesis inside the cell. It has a positive effect on cellular metabolism of fat, and also contributes to the increase of glucose transport through cell membranes.
What is Metformin used for?
The main action of Metformin is to inhibit the formation of glucose in the liver and increase the sensitivity of myocytes to insulin. Consequently, this drug is used in the following cases:
In type 2 diabetes, in case, it is not possible to control blood glucose level with the help of diet.
With type 1 diabetes, to improve the quality of insulin replacement therapy.
Also, Metformin is effective in the treatment of polycystic ovarian syndrome, but without consulting a gynecologist - endocrinologist, the drug is contraindicated.
Metformin: weight loss
In the treatment of type 2 diabetes with this drug, stable weight loss in patients is observed. Please note that it is contraindicated to use the drug specifically for weight loss.
Metformin has shown its effectiveness in reducing blood glucose, but not in all cases leads to weight loss. If you take the drug as prescribed by a doctor and do not observe proper caloric intake, you will not lose weight.
Metformin and alcohol
It is contraindicated to combine the drug with alcohol, as there is a high probability of blood glucose concentration decreasing below the acceptable values, up to pathological hypoglycemia, as well as to lactoacidosis.
What is lactoacidosis? It is an increase in the level of lactic acid in the blood. The human body produces more lactic acid when taking Metformin, so the body does not have time to fully utilize it because of alcohol consumption. It is in such cases that excessive amounts of lactic acid accumulate, leading to a pathological condition called lactoacidosis. Lactacidosis affects the heart, blood vessels, kidneys, and lungs.
If medical help is not sought in time, multiple organ failure occurs and then death.
How to recognize lactoacidosis?
- general weakness;
- headache and dizziness;
- muscle soreness;
- difficulty breathing; dry, unproductive cough;
- cramping-like abdominal pain with upsetting stools, nausea, and vomiting;
- tremors of extremities;
- palpitations (tachycardia).
Lactoacidosis is an emergency condition that requires treatment in a hospital setting.
If you take alcohol with Metformin and experience the above symptoms, seek immediate medical attention at your nearest hospital. Alcohol also causes a decrease in blood glucose levels called hypoglycemia.
Hypoglycemia is not a disease, but a physical disorder that can occur for a variety of reasons, including diabetes, liver disease, metabolic disorders, and some tumors. Hypoglycemia is manifested by impaired consciousness up to and including a life-threatening hypoglycemic coma. Treatment should be administered as soon as possible when symptoms of hypoglycemia appear, such as:
- a state of general weakness, drowsiness;
- inability to concentrate, absent-mindedness, feelings of panic;
- headaches and dizziness;
- goose bumps and double vision;
- slurred and slurred speech;
- inappropriate behavior;
- seizures and loss of consciousness are possible.
If conscious, offer to drink a glass of juice or a sweetened drink, or eat candy or a glucose tablet. Call for emergency medical assistance. While waiting, clear the airways and keep them open. Turn the victim on the side to avoid aspiration of vomit.
Metformin 850 mg causes side effects such as diarrhea. This side effect is caused by the inhibition of glucose absorption in the small intestine. This action is important for effectively lowering blood sugar levels. However, the result is gas and intestinal distress. The drug does not destroy the intestinal microflora.
In most cases, intestinal disorders begin on the first day of taking the drug and last for 2-3 weeks, gradually subsiding.
Berberine vs Metformin
Berberine and Metformin are used to reduce weight and blood glucose levels.
Recommended in the diet as an additional source of alkaloids. Helps improve gastrointestinal function in intestinal infections, cholecystitis and hepatitis reduces blood glucose levels.
Type 2 diabetes mellitus (insulin-independent) with the ineffectiveness of diet therapy and physical activity, in obese patients.
Hypersensitivity (allergy to the active substance and additional components), pregnancy, cholelithiasis.
Hypersensitivity to Metformin; severe renal and hepatic insufficiency, acute or chronic metabolic acidosis, including diabetic ketoacidosis, childhood.
How to use
Orally, 5-10 mg 3 times a day, before meals. The course of treatment is 2-4 weeks.
The usual starting dose is 500 mg or 850 mg once daily after or with a meal. If necessary, the doctor may increase the dosage. The duration of treatment may be prolonged.
However, Berberine had one advantage - unlike Metformin, the drug has the effect of lowering cholesterol and triglycerides. Berberine lowers blood sugar levels not only like Metformin but also like another diabetes drug Rosiglitazone.
Consult a physician before use because the drug has various contraindications, including:
- hypersensitivity to Metformin or any other component of the drug;
- diabetic ketoacidosis,
- diabetic precoma;
- moderate to severe renal insufficiency or impaired renal function;
- acute conditions with risk of renal dysfunction, such as dehydration, severe infectious diseases, and shock;
- diseases that can lead to the development of tissue hypoxia (especially acute illness or exacerbation of chronic disease);
- decompensated heart failure, respiratory failure, recent myocardial infarction, shock;
- liver failure, acute alcohol poisoning, alcoholism.
Read carefully the instruction for Metformin online on the official site. This information is not official and is intended for general guidance.
In addition, the drug is prescribed with caution in children and elderly patients over 65 years of age.
Use in pregnancy is possible in cases of extreme necessity when the expected benefit of therapy for the mother exceeds the possible risk to the fetus. Metformin crosses the placental barrier.
Metformin is excreted in small amounts with breast milk, and the concentration of Metformin in breast milk may be 1/3 of the concentration in the mother's plasma. Side effects in infants during breastfeeding against the background of Metformin administration have not been observed. However, due to the limited data, use during breastfeeding is not recommended.
Metformin has no teratogenic effect in doses that are 2-3 times higher than the therapeutic doses used in humans. Metformin has no mutagenic potential and has no effect on fertility.
Metformin for prediabetes
Prediabetes is the first sign that you are at risk for developing type II diabetes. This means that your blood sugar levels are higher than the established norm. Lifestyle changes, dietary changes, and Metformin can help you get your blood sugar back to normal and avoid or significantly delay the development of diabetes.
Suppose diet, medication, and exercise are not prescribed in a timely manner. In that case, the condition can worsen and lead to diabetes and serious complications such as heart disease, stroke, vision impairment, nervous system disease, and kidney disease.
Metformin is excreted by the kidneys and has an average plasma elimination half-life of 4.0 to 8.7 hours after oral administration.
Metformin: hair loss
Although Metformin is not the cause of hair loss, some patients have noted that while taking the drug, hair becomes thinning, brittle, and begins to fall out. But, Metformin is not always the culprit; there are other causes:
- Stress. Your body may be stressed because of deteriorating health.
- Hormones. Diabetes can affect your hormone levels. Fluctuating hormones can affect hair growth.
- Hyperglycemia. High blood sugar levels, over a long period of time, can cause damage to blood vessels, which can affect hair growth.
Metformin also lowers vitamin B12 levels, a deficiency of which can also lead to hair loss. If you are taking Metformin, are losing your hair and are worried about vitamin B-12 deficiency, talk to your doctor about adding foods containing vitamin B-12 to your diet, such as beef, fish, eggs, and milk.
If necessary, your doctor may prescribe supplements or suggest a course of infections.
Metformin where to buy?
Order Metformin in our online pharmacy. The drug is dispensed with a doctor's prescription, but if you do not have time to make an appointment at the clinic, we will help you solve this issue. Thanks to the work of an in-house physician at our pharmacy, you will be able to buy Metformin otc. The cost of the drug already includes a prescription from the doctor. Also, information is always available for patients: about availability and Metformin 850 mg price.read more