Metformin safe for obese children, study says
Metformin is a popular drug used to treat type 2 diabetes in adults.
Until recently, it was not known whether the drug could produce positive results in children. A study that will be published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism next year says that metformin is safe for obese kids.
In one of the largest studies to concentrate on how metformin affects non-diabetic obese children, researchers tested 151 kids over six months--some received metformin, and some received a daily placebo.
“Our findings provide evidence that a treatment course of metformin is clinically useful, safe and well-tolerated in obese children who are at risk for type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. Deborah Kendall of Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital in the United Kingdom and lead author of the study.
The results of the study showed that metformin had a positive impact on BMI and blood glucose levels--both of which can be indicators for developing diabetes when they reach unhealthy levels. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 32 percent of children are overweight or obese.
Kendall says the results of the study are promising for children that may be at risk for diabetes later in life.
"Metformin may also provide stimulus for lifestyle changes and potentially reduce long-term risk for type 2 diabetes and its associated health problems," said Kendall.