Efficacy and safety of sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors in type 2 diabetes mellitus with inadequate glycemic control on metformin: a meta-analysis

ABSTRACT Objectives To provide a meta-analysis of the clinical efficacy and safety of sodium glucose co-transporter 2 inhibitors (SGLT2-i), as a combination treatment with metformin in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients with inadequate glycemic control with metformin alone. Materials and methods We have searched randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in the database: MEDLINE, Embase and Cochrane Collaborative database. We used mean differences (MD) to assess the efficacy of glycemic and other clinical parameters, and risk ratios (RR) to evaluate the adverse events for safety endpoints. The heterogeneity was evaluated by I2. Results Finally 9 studies were included. SGLT2-i plus metformin had higher reduction level in HbA1C [MD = -0.50, 95% CI (-0.62, -0.38), p < 0.00001], FPG [MD = -1.12, 95%CI (-1.38, -0.87), p < 0.00001], body weight [MD = -1.72, 95% CI (-2.05, -1.39), p < 0.00001], SBP [MD = -4.44, 95% CI (-5.45, -3.43), p < 0.00001] and DBP [MD = -1.74, 95% CI (-2.40, -1.07), p < 0.00001] compared with metformin monotherapy. However, SGLT2-i plus metformin group had higher risk of genital infection [RR = 3.98, 95% CI (2.38, 6.67), p < 0.00001]. No significant difference was found in the risk of hypoglycemia, urinary tract infection or volume related adverse events. Conclusions Although the risk of genital infection may increase, SGLT2-i plus metformin may provide an attractive treatment option to those T2DM patients who are unable to achieve glycemic control with metformin alone, based on its effects on glycemic control, reducing body weight and lowering blood pressure.