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Should I Stop Taking Metformin ?

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by Del 80, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. Del 80

    Del 80 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Been feeling pretty groggy lately, and someone suggested stopping taking Metformin for a while, I take four 500mg daily..... so couple of days ago I stopped it.......now feel great, and my sugars have not gone up........had a blood test yesterday and am awaiting results.....IF I have to go see diabetic nurse presumably I should mention this to her ?.......been taking it about four years now, just wondered what people think ........
     
  2. AloeSvea

    AloeSvea Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely tell them/the diabetes nurse/your doc/diabetes team @Del 80 ! Medications, and whether or not you choose to take them or continue them or discontinue them is at the basis of your relationship with your medical professionals. And their job is to monitor you and advise you, based on those decisions. (And is what you pay them for! :).)
     
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  3. mazza 2

    mazza 2 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Del 80, can I ask in what way you have been feeling groggy? What sort of blood glucose levels are you getting with metformin and without? Personally, if you feel better without them, and you're keeping your levels within range, then I don't see it a problem if you decide to stop taking them, Maybe see how it goes for a couple of months and then you can always re-start them if you want or need to. It's completely your decision. Hope all goes well for you. Take care.
     
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  4. lucylocket61

    lucylocket61 Type 2 · Expert

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    I am curious - you have been taking metformin for 4 years, but only recently started feeling groggy with them. Has anything else changed, or your blood sugars gone up? Your medical team do need to know what meds you are, and are not, taking though.
     
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  5. VashtiB

    VashtiB Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I agree that if it is only recently you have been feeling groggy that may not be related to the metformin if you have taken that for 4 years.

    My personal view is that my GP gives me advice and I make the decision whether I take medication she suggests. In my case my GP really wants me on statins and I have refused at this stage. She is concerned about my cholesterol (and so be honest so an I) but she knows I am not willing yet to take anything. I think it is important for you to make the decision but also for your medical professionals to know what your decision is and why. So if you want to stop taking anything I recommend that you let your medical professional know.
     
  6. Del 80

    Del 80 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies.....when I say "groggy" I mean that awful feeling that you get when the sugars go too low, which mine seem to do frequently.......I shall of course discuss things with my doctor / diabetic nurse, if I ever get to see them......
     
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  7. Tophat1900

    Tophat1900 Type 3c · Well-Known Member

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    Define low?

    Some people do experience this with metformin, but it really is a rare thing.
     
  8. Del 80

    Del 80 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Sometimes hovers between 3.0 and 4.0......I always know because I feel awful........been taking just one Metformin a day, for 5 days now, and feel great.......
     
  9. Kyambala

    Kyambala Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Good morning Del 80,

    First a couple of questions:
    1. Are you on Metformin only - or do you take other medication such as Insulin?
    2. 4 or slightly lower is not too bad but 3 or lower means that you are heading for a Hypo - so do you get frequent Hypos?

    One more question - when you stopped taking Metformin what happened to your blood sugar levels?
     
  10. Gloucestergirl

    Gloucestergirl Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I was on Metformin for several years and I never had an appetite and have always been slim. Metformin is an appetite suppressant and I never felt hungry but after a couple of courses of B12 injections, (Metformin is known to cause B12 deficiency) I thought I would stop taking the tablets for a few days. I am also on quick acting and slow acting insulin so it's not as if I would be left without any medication. Anyway, the day after I stopped taking them I actually felt hungry! Stopping it made no difference whatsoever to my sugar levels so when I told the diabetes nurse what I had done and asked if it would be OK to not take them she said to try it for a while and see how I got on and it's now around two years since I stopped taking Metformin. Regarding low readings, "Make four the floor" is a diabetes saying because although it's good to be low it doesn't take much to get too low. I kept striving for lows as I had read that high sugar readings are not good but was told by a diabetes nurse that low readings are advised for younger people to stop them getting complications but as you get older they want you to be running a bit higher. I'm 74 so my targets are 7-9 before meals and 10-12 before bed as they would much rather you were running a bit high than too low. Metformin apparently doesn't cause hypos but Gliclazide does so maybe that needs adjusting to avoid going too low. I certainly think that leaving out the Metformin is well worth a try.
     
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  11. juliekem

    juliekem Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Metformin - omg!!! Diarrhoea so bad I can no longer walk my dogs but I don't want to take anything that might cause a hypo, I NEED my driving licence. I have tried cutting it out for 48 hours then reintroducing it (suggested by dn) and it did help for a little while but basically metformin (even the slow release one I am on) gives me IBS.
     
  12. HSSS

    HSSS Type 2 · Expert

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    Have you tried low carb instead of medication? It’s much more effective anyway. It not necessarily a case of swapping for something that induces hypos.

    Lots of people in here had to stop metformin because of the side effects.
     
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  13. Del 80

    Del 80 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I also take 1 1/2 glyclazide a day, plus various blood pressure tablets, and one blood thinner......at the moment am taking two Metformin, one in the morning and one at night......my sugar levels are pretty much the same as when I was taking the four Metformin......
     
  14. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Oracle

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    Same with me so I stopped taking it and changed what I ate instead.
     
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  15. Kyambala

    Kyambala Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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  16. Kyambala

    Kyambala Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Good afternoon Gloucestergirl

    If your fasting blood sugar is 7-9 I would consider that to be very high. I am 78 so we are of similar ages and I try to keep my FBS around 5 - even 6 I consider to be getting high. I am on Insulin Humulin 3 morning and evening with 2 slow acting Metformin in the evening.

    Years ago, before I started on Insulin, when I tried to take Metformin I felt sick and got headaches - now on Metformin Slow Release with Insulin I apparently have no side effects - and my FBS is better controlled than it has ever been (I have been Diabetic now for about 26 years). I needed 60 units of Insulin in the morning and 40 units in the evening.

    I confess that I tried the LCHF diet for a couple of years and never lost any weight - but it did help me control my FBS and Insulin needs to 40 am and 30 pm - until I was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer 2 years ago. My diet had to be adjusted to a mainly oily fish diet and no red meat and my Insulin needs dropped to 34 and 24.

    15 months ago I started on a daily dose of Radiotherapy (37 daily doses). With my Prostate Cancer cured my Carbs have increased a little and I now eat Jordans Muesli for breakfast (previously it was Kippers) - I have put on about 5 kilos but my morning Insulin has gone down to 30 units am and 24 units pm.

    My FBS is usually between 4.3 and 5.6 - although since my Doctor changed my Blood Testing Meter I seem to get a couple of weeks with low readings 5 - 6 and then it shoots up to 7 - 9 for a week before reverting to the lower readings again. My diet does not vary very much. I eat mainly chicken salads in the evenings and interspersed with a cooked meal with fish and potatoes & green veg.

    But I am happy that my FBS are usually well controlled.

    Have a nice day.
     
  17. Kyambala

    Kyambala Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Good afternoon Del 80

    I don't know what you eat - but I think that I would recommend that you try the Low Carb High Fat Diet - it tends to lower your blood sugar levels without the need for Metformin - then see what affect it has on you.
     
  18. Dr Snoddy

    Dr Snoddy Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    A LCFH diet has not only kept my blood glucose in the non-diabetic range since shortly after diagnosis but also reduced my blood pressure from normal to really good for a woman of my age. I started on 2000mg of Metformin per day which rapidly depleted my B12 levels, reduced to 1000mg, then 500mg then no medication at all. This was done in discussion with my DN. My B12 levels are now mid-normal.
     
  19. johnw26

    johnw26 · Member

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  20. johnw26

    johnw26 · Member

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    I am so glad that the depletion of B12 with Metformin has been mentioned. This is very, very important for any vegetarian or vegan. It certainly hadn't been mentioned by my DN. There is a tiny mention in the current mefformin package leaflet, a possible very rare (1in 10,000) side effect. I will be increasing my use of vegemite and making sure my B12 levels are regularly checked.
    .
     
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