Metformin and serious adverse effects

Janelle C Nisbet, Joanna M Sturtevant and Johannes B Prins
Med J Aust 2004; 180 (2): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2004.tb05796.x
Published online: 19 January 2004

Attention to known contraindications and intercurrent illness can avoid life-threatening acidosis

  • Princess Alexandra Hospital, Brisbane, QLD.


  • 1. Effect of intensive blood-glucose control with metformin on complications in overweight patients with type 2 diabetes (UKPDS 34). UK Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) Group. Lancet 1998; 352: 854-865.
  • 2. Glueck CJ, Wang P, Goldenberg N, Sieve-Smith L. Pregnancy outcomes among women with polycystic ovary syndrome treated with metformin. Hum Reprod 2002; 17: 2858-2864.
  • 3. Slama G. The potential of metformin for diabetes prevention. Diabetes Metab 2003; 29: 104-111.
  • 4. Hamilton J, Cummings E, Zdravkovic V, et al. Metformin as an adjunct therapy in adolescents with type 1 diabetes and insulin resistance: a randomized controlled trial. Diabetes Care 2003; 26: 138-143.
  • 5. Brown JB, Pedula MS, Barzilay J, et al. Lactic acidosis rates in type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care 1998; 21: 1659-1663.
  • 6. Bailey CJ, Turner RC. Metformin. N Engl J Med 1996; 334: 574-579.
  • 7. Calabrese AT, Coley KC, DaPos SV, et al. Evaluation of prescribing practices: risk of lactic acidosis with metformin therapy. Arch Intern Med 2002; 162: 434-437.
  • 8. Emslie-Smith AM, Boyle DIR, Evans JMM, et al. Contraindications to metformin therapy in patients with type 2 diabetes — a population based study of adherence to prescribing guidelines. Diabet Med 2001; 18: 483-488.
  • 9. Jones GC, Macklin JP, Alexander WD. Contraindications to the use of metformin. BMJ 2003; 326: 4-5.
  • 10. Thomsen HS, Morcos SK. Contrast media and metformin: guidelines to diminish the risk of lactic acidosis in non-insulin-dependent diabetics after administration of contrast media. ESUR Contrast Media Safety Committee. Eur Radiol 1999; 9: 738-740.


remove_circle_outline Delete Author
add_circle_outline Add Author

Do you have any competing interests to declare? *

I/we agree to assign copyright to the Medical Journal of Australia and agree to the Conditions of publication *
I/we agree to the Terms of use of the Medical Journal of Australia *
Email me when people comment on this article

Online responses are no longer available. Please refer to our instructions for authors page for more information.