What complications can result from patients with sulfonylurea-related hypoglycemia?

Updated: Jul 23, 2020
  • Author: Osama Hamdy, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP  more...
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A study by Middleton et al suggested that sulfonylurea-related hypoglycemia can result in harmful cardiovascular effects. The study included 30 persons with sulfonylurea-treated type 2 diabetes, nine of whom were found to have hypoglycemia. The investigators found that five of the nine patients demonstrated hypoglycemia-associated QTc prolongation; additionally, the hypoglycemic individuals showed higher QT dynamicity relative to the other patients, even after the hypoglycemic events had passed. [22]

Another study, by Mezquita-Raya et al, involving patients with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, also found a relationship between hypoglycemia and QTc prolongation, with the phenomenon occurring primarily in cases of type 1 diabetes. However, the results did not demonstrate a link between hypoglycemia and clinical arrhythmias in patients with type 1 or type 2 diabetes with high cardiovascular risk. [23]

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