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Metformin (metformin hydrochloride) is a common diabetes treatment in the form of a tablet, taken to bring blood sugar levels under control. Whilst we no longer offer diabetes treatment through this service, our doctors have put together some useful information on the options available to you.

Metformin hydrochloride 500mg | from £0.16 per tablet

Metformin 500mg picture

Key Features
  • Regulates blood sugar levels
  • Common treatment for type 2 diabetes
  • 84 or 168 tablets available in 500mg dosage
Metformin is a common treatment for type 2 diabetes, and is most effective when taken in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle.
Dr Gigi Taguri

Key Information

The medicine
Metformin hydrochloride 500mg

How does it work?

Metformin works by regulating your blood sugar levels.

How to take it

Take as previously directed by the doctor who usually prescribes Metformin for you.

Side effects

Most commonly: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and loss of appetite. Rarer side effects include skin reactions such as redness or an itch.

Improving diabetes control

Lifestyle changes, such as a healthy diet and controlling your weight can also help control your blood sugar levels. It is also important to have regular medical reviews of your diabetes. At least every 12 months we recommend you have blood tests to monitor your diabetes, kidneys and cholesterol function along with a blood pressure check.

Ongoing management of your diabetes

You should continue to see your GP or consultant for your diabetes care as this service only provides Metformin tablets. You will need regular blood tests, foot checks, eye examinations and general physical checks as part of your management.

Taking Metformin

How does Metformin work?

Metformin is a biguanide that treats diabetes in two ways:

  • by reducing the amount of glucose produced by your liver
  • by helping your body respond more effectively to insulin

It is most commonly prescribed to patients with type 2 diabetes, but in some cases can also be used by type 1 sufferers in conjunction with regular insulin injections. It is often used by overweight diabetic patients, as it does not tend to encourage weight gain and can reduce the risks of heart disease.

Does Metformin treat the underlying causes of diabetes?

Diabetes is caused either by your pancreas producing too little insulin (type 1) or your body becoming resistant to insulin (type 2). Type 1 diabetes cannot be cured and you will need regular insulin treatment to keep your glucose levels normal. If you have type 2 diabetes, by eating healthily, exercising regularly and losing weight (if you are overweight) you may be able to keep your blood sugar levels at a safe and healthy level without the need for other types of treatment.

Diabetes tablets such as Metformin, however, can only regulate your blood sugar levels for the period in which you take them. This means that while Metformin will help you manage your condition, it cannot treat the underlying cause of your diabetes.

Alternative Treatments

Our clinic does not offer alternative treatments for diabetes. If you need insulin injections or are on other tablets for your diabetes, you should consult a trained medical professional face to face.

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