Metformin Treatment in Hyperglycemic Critically Ill Patients: Another Challenge on the Control of Adverse Outcomes
New-onset hyperglycemia in patients admitted to intensive care units increases the risk of morbidity and mortality. Insulin resistance is frequently seen in the treatment of stress-induced hyperglycemia. Metformin, an oral anti-hyperglycemic agent, may introduce a new treatment protocol in critically ill patients with insulin-resistance hyperglycemia. Fifty-one non-diabetic traumatized patients with blood sugar (BS) levels more than 130 mg/dL were introducedto three days of treatment with intensive insulin (50 1U) or metformin (1000 mg, twice daily) therapy. Clinical evaluations included acute physiological and chronic health evaluation (APACHE II) and Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). Experimental tests included BS level, mean arterial pressure (MAP), pH, HCO(3), and lactate. Eight patients were excluded and 21 of remained patients treated with insulin and 23 with metformin. There was no significant difference in terms of the evaluated factors between the two groups at the time of admission. Although desirable BS level (BS < 130 mg/dL) was reached by three days of metformin treatment (p < 0.01),there was no significant difference in BS, MAP, pH and HCO(3) of insulin treated group in comparison with metformin treated patients. The findings were similar for APACHE II and GCS as well. Although obvious studies are required, these findings may lead to effective therapies against stress-induced hyperglycemia.