Fast Five Quiz: Metformin

Mary L. Windle, PharmD


December 22, 2020

Accumulating data suggest that metformin use in women with type 2 diabetes is associated with a reduced risk for death from COVID-19. Several observational retrospective studies have shown a reduction in mortality among metformin users compared with nonusers. A retrospective observational study of 6256 persons in the United States found that metformin was significantly associated with reduced mortality in women but not in men. A prospective study of 110 hospitalized diabetic patients with COVID-19 found that metformin use was associated with a higher risk for disease progression compared with use of nonmetformin diabetes drugs. Thus far, studies have not clearly shown that patients with type 2 diabetes taking metformin have a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 compared with patients with type 2 diabetes who are not taking metformin.

Glycemic control is associated with lower inflammatory markers. The mechanism by which metformin and other antidiabetic agents may influence COVID-19 mortality continues to be explored and may relate to their potential anti-inflammatory properties, including decreased C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, and ferritin.

Read more about type 2 diabetes and COVID-19.


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