Spanish researchers found a link between the use of therapies with insulin and also the combination of metformin and sulfonylurea and increased bone fragility in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. After analyzing the data of more than 12,200 patients, no significant association was found between the increased risk of fracture and another antidiabetic drug.
Researchers at the Centers for Biomedical Research in Network for Fragility and Healthy Aging (CIBERFES) and for Diabetes and Associated Metabolic Diseases (CIBERDEM) have linked the use of insulin treatments with an increased risk of fractures among patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM2).
The study was led by researches Daniel Prieto-Alhambra, of the University Institute for Research in Primary Care (IDIAPJGol); Adolfo Díez Pérez, of the Hospital del Mar Institute for Medical Research (IMIM;, and Dídac Mauricio, of the Hospital de Santa Creu i Sant Pau. The research, published in the journal Osteoporosis International, shows that there is an increased risk of bone fracture when patients are under insulin therapy in comparison with other hypoglycemic treatments.
Patients with type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of fragility fractures, and antidiabetic therapies may contribute for this to happen. “Our objective has been to qualify the fracture risk associated with the different antidiabetic treatments usually prescribed to patients with DM2,” explains Prieto-Alhambra.
In this way, the work takes into consideration the use of all antidiabetic drugs administered in the six months prior to the start date, comparing it with monotherapy with metformin (MTF), the most commonly used drug for this condition.
Insulin therapy and the combination of MTF and sulfonylurea (SU) were associated with a higher risk of fracture than MTF monotherapy in patients with DM2, which implies that the risk of fracture should be considered when a hypoglycemic medication is introduced as part of the treatment for DM2.