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Drug mixture “may prevent diabetes”


Low doses of GlaxoSmithKline’s Avandia in combination with metformin can help prevent diabetes while avoiding some of the more unpleasant side-effects of the treatment, research has suggested.

A study published in the Lancet found the blend reduced the risk that patients would go from high blood sugar to full type 2 diabetes by around two-thirds.

Dr. Bernard Zinman, of Mount Sinai Hospital at the University of Toronto, said: “The side-effects were not there — the weight gain, fluid retention, the gastrointestinal side-effects.”

The result would likely be the same with Takeda’s Actos, he added.

Side-effects of the three drugs include upset stomachs, weight gain, fluid retention and, in extreme cases, heart failure.

The investigation, which followed 207 patients for four years, ended before the heart attack risk could be measured.

Copyright Press Association 2010
The Lancet

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