Description: The American College of Physicians (ACP) developed this guideline to present the evidence and provide clinical recommendations on the comparative effectiveness and safety of type 2 diabetes medications.
Methods: This guideline is based on a systematic evidence review evaluating literature published on this topic from 1966 through April 2010 that was identified by using MEDLINE (updated through December 2010), EMBASE, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials. Searches were limited to English-language publications. The clinical outcomes evaluated for this guideline included all-cause mortality, cardiovascular morbidity and mortality, cerebrovascular morbidity, neuropathy, nephropathy, and retinopathy. This guideline grades the evidence and recommendations by using the American College of Physicians clinical practice guidelines grading system. RECOMMENDATION 1: ACP recommends that clinicians add oral pharmacologic therapy in patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when lifestyle modifications, including diet, exercise, and weight loss, have failed to adequately improve hyperglycemia (Grade: strong recommendation; high-quality evidence). RECOMMENDATION 2: ACP recommends that clinicians prescribe monotherapy with metformin for initial pharmacologic therapy to treat most patients with type 2 diabetes (Grade: strong recommendation; high-quality evidence). RECOMMENDATION 3: ACP recommends that clinicians add a second agent to metformin to treat patients with persistent hyperglycemia when lifestyle modifications and monotherapy with metformin fail to control hyperglycemia (Grade: strong recommendation; high-quality evidence).