Vitamin B(12) in type 2 diabetic patients treated with metformin

José María Calvo Romero, José Manuel Ramiro Lozano
Endocrinología y Nutrición: órgano de la Sociedad Española de Endocrinología y Nutrición 2012, 59 (8): 487-90

OBJECTIVE: To test vitamin B12 plasma levels in type 2 diabetic patients treated with metformin in our area.

METHODS: A cross-sectional, observational study of consecutive type 2 diabetic patients on drug treatment attending an internal medicine outpatient clinic.

RESULTS: One hundred and nine patients (81 treated with metformin) were enrolled into the study. Mean time on metformin treatment was 43.5 months and mean drug dose was 1,779 mg/day. Patients treated with metformin had significantly lower vitamin B(12) plasma levels (393.5 vs. 509 pg/mL, P = .0008). Seven (8.6%) of 81 patients treated with metformin and none of the 28 patients not treated with the drug had vitamin B(12) plasma levels lower than 197 pg/mL. No correlation was found between vitamin B12 plasma levles and metformin treatment time or dosage.

CONCLUSIONS: In type 2 diabetic patients, treatment with metformin is associated to lower vitamin B12 plasma levels. Vitamin B12 deficiency associated with metformin is relatively common in our area.

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