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Use of sodium–glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors in older patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus

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Geriatrics and Gerontology International

Published online on


Aim Sodium–glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors are antidiabetic agents that act on the proximal renal tubules to lower blood glucose levels by inhibiting glucose reabsorption and promoting urinary glucose excretion. The present study assessed the long‐term use of SGLT2 inhibitors in older patients with diabetes. Methods A total of 117 older patients with type 2 diabetes who were given SGLT2 inhibitors were enrolled from April 2014 to March 2016. Results The mean age of the patients was 73.7 ± 10.0 years. During the follow‐up period (mean 289.3 days), there was no event associated with oral administration of SGLT2 inhibitors. These drugs significantly lowered fasting blood glucose and glycosylated hemoglobin levels at 6 months, and did not affect the creatinine level, blood urea nitrogen/creatinine ratio or estimated glomerular filtration rate during treatment. Although the treatment significantly increased hemoglobin and hematocrit levels, it did not affect the ultrasonographically determined diameter of the inferior vena cava, and no signs of intravascular collapse were observed. Changes in brain natriuretic peptide levels during the follow‐up period were assessed in 78 patients with a brain natriuretic peptide level exceeding the normal upper limit before treatment with SGLT2 inhibitors. The brain natriuretic peptide levels significantly decreased after 6 months of treatment. Conclusions In older Japanese patients with diabetes, treatment with SGLT2 inhibitors for 6 months exerted a favorable hypoglycemic effect, while no sign of dehydration was observed. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2017; ••: ••–••.