Metformin-induced lactic acidosis: no one left behind

Crit Care. 2011;15(1):107. doi: 10.1186/cc9404. Epub 2011 Jan 21.


Metformin is a safe drug when correctly used in properly selected patients. In real life, however, associated lactic acidosis has been repeatedly, although rarely, reported. The term metformin-induced lactic acidosis refers to cases that cannot be explained by any major risk factor other than drug accumulation, usually due to renal failure. Treatment consists of vital function support and drug removal, mainly achieved by renal replacement therapy. Despite dramatic clinical presentation, the prognosis of metformin-induced lactic acidosis is usually surprisingly good.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Acidosis, Lactic / diagnosis*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metformin / adverse effects*
  • Severity of Illness Index*


  • Metformin