The relationship between patient-reported tolerability issues with oral antidiabetic agents and work productivity among patients having type 2 diabetes

J Occup Environ Med. 2011 Feb;53(2):204-10. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318209e0ce.


Objective: To investigate the association between reported oral antidiabetic tolerability issues and work productivity, activity impairment, and indirect costs.

Methods: Data were collected from the 2006 to 2008 US National Health and Wellness Survey and the Lightspeed Research, using an Internet-based questionnaire (N = 2074).

Results: Absenteeism, presenteeism, overall work impairment, and activity impairment increased as the number of tolerability issues increased. Similar results were observed using a diabetes-specific productively measure. Total annual adjusted indirect costs (absenteeism and presenteeism costs summed) were $2759, $5533, $7537, and $8405 for patients with 1, 2, 3, and 4 or more tolerability issues, respectively.

Conclusions: The consideration of tolerability profiles of oral antidiabetic agents may lead to improved productivity among treated patients. Furthermore, targeted educational programs regarding risks and management of these issues to employees with type 2 diabetes mellitus may benefit both employers and patients.

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Aged
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / economics
  • Efficiency / drug effects*
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / economics
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Glycated Hemoglobin A
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • hemoglobin A1c protein, human