Metformin: an Old Therapy that Deserves a New Indication for the Treatment of Obesity

  • L. I. IgelEmail author
  • A. Sinha
  • K. H. Saunders
  • C. M. Apovian
  • D. Vojta
  • L. J. Aronne
Nonstatin Drugs (E. deGoma, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Nonstatin Drugs


Metformin is not currently used for weight loss or diabetes prevention because it lacks an FDA indication for obesity and/or pre-diabetes treatment. Based on the evidence, metformin has been shown to decrease the incidence of type 2 diabetes, and compares favorably to other weight-loss medications in terms of efficacy as well as safety. Thus, metformin should be considered for a treatment indication in patients with these conditions.


Metformin Obesity Pre-diabetes Diabetes prevention 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Dr. Igel, Dr. Sinha, and Dr. Saunders declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Dr. Apovian declares to have participated on advisory boards for Amylin, Merck, Johnson and Johnson, Arena, Nutrisystem, Zafgen, Sanofi-Aventis, Orexigen, EnteroMedics, GI Dynamics, Novo Nordisk and Scientific Intake; to having received research funding from Lilly, Amylin, Aspire Bariatrics, GI Dynamics, Pfizer, Sanofi-Aventis, Orexigen, MetaProteomics, the Dr. Robert C. and Veronica Atkins Foundation, MYOS Corporation and Takeda; and to currently being on the Takeda Speakers Bureau for the medication Contrave.

Dr. Vojta declares to be an employee at UnitedHealth Group.

Dr. Aronne declares consultant/advisory board work with Jamieson Labs, Pfizer Inc, Novo Nordisk A/S, Eisai, VIVUS, GI Dynamics, JOVIA Health, and Gelesis; to be a shareholder for Zafgen, Gelesis, Myos Corporation, and Jamieson Labs; to be on the Board of Directors with MYOS Corporation and Jamieson Labs; and for having research funding from Aspire Bariatrics and Eisai.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. I. Igel
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. Sinha
    • 2
  • K. H. Saunders
    • 1
  • C. M. Apovian
    • 3
  • D. Vojta
    • 4
  • L. J. Aronne
    • 1
  1. 1.Comprehensive Weight Control Center, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and MetabolismWeill Cornell Medical CollegeNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineNew York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical CenterNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Departments of Medicine and Pediatrics, Nutrition and Weight Management Center and Nutrition Support Service, Boston Medical CenterBoston University School of MedicineBostonUSA
  4. 4.UnitedHealth Center for Health Reform and Modernization, UnitedHealth GroupMinnetonkaUSA

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