ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Off Label Uses of Metformin – Things You Should Know

Updated on April 11, 2012

Metformin is an anti-diabetic drug belonging to the biguanide class. It is indicated in patients with type 2 diabetes. A lot of researches have been done proving the efficacy of metformin in the treatment of type 2 diabetes; however aside from lowering your blood sugar it could do a lot more. Below is a list of off label uses of metformin making this drug not only for diabetics but for other people as well.

courtesy of
courtesy of

Off Label Uses of Metformin

Metformin as a Treatment for Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) – polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the important causes of menstrual irregularity as well as androgen excess in woman. Females with PCOS usually take contraceptives to restore their menses into their usual state however some women are not comfortable taking contraceptives especially for those who are planning a baby. Metformin is an alternative therapy that will restore ovulatory menses in 50 percent of patients with PCOS.

Metformin as a Treatment for Obesity – Females with PCOS and who are obese could benefit with metformin. Aside from the possibility of restoring regular menses, metformin could also decrease body weight. In one study, metformin was compared with an appetite depressant, and after 6 months the results were noted to be the same, concluding that metformin can achieved weight loss as much as with other anti-obesity medication.

Metformin as a Treatment for HIV-associated lipodystrophy - HIV-associated lipodystrophy refers to changes in fat distribution associated with metabolic abnormalities. In one study, metformin has been noted to reduce visceral and subcutaneous abdominal fat among HIV-patients with central obesity and hyperinsulinemia.

Metformin as a Treatment for Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) – Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH is a clinical entity wherein patients who lack significant history of alcohol intake have liver biopsy findings of alcoholic steatohepatitis. Some randomized trials have shown the benefit of metformin for this type of patients.

Metformin as a drug for Diabetes Prevention – patients or individuals who are high risk for having diabetes could start taking metformin to prevent diabetes or prolong its onset. In one trial, it was noted that lifestyle modification and metformin have lowered the incidence of type 2 diabetes among individuals who are high risk for the disease.

Metformin as a drug for Gestation Diabetes – cases of gestational diabetes are much higher among women who have PCOS. Metformin given in the 2nd and 3rd trimester appears to be safe in many women, however some of them will still insulin supplementation to control their sugar levels.

Aside from diabetes, the list above mentions other benefits of metformin. Hopefully the list would grow in the near future.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • jhunpaler profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Philippines

      thanks for the comment thesingernurse :) Metformin could decrease insulin resistance in DM and NASH patients.

    • thesingernurse profile image

      Tina Siuagan 

      6 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      These are very good information. As far as I can remember, people who are obese and has diabetes can be affected with NASH. But of course, there are still some patients who develop the disease even in the absence of the said risk factors. Having mentioned Metformin as treatment for NASH really sparked my interest.

      Thank you very much for another informative hub Doctor. :) I enjoyed reading.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)