SGLT2 inhibitors end in the suffix "-gliflozin." The most common SGLT2 inhibitors include canagliflozin (Invokana), dapaglifllozin (Farxiga), and empagliflozin (Jardiance).
SGLT2 inhibitors work by inhibiting glucose reabsorption via sodium-glucose co-transporter 2 in the proximal tubule. This promotes glycosuria leading to lower fasting plasma glucose levels and thus mild hemoglobin A1c reduction.
SGLT2 inhibitors are FDA-approved as adjunctive treatment for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Exercise caution when administering to patients with significant diabetic nephropathy.
Weight loss occurs from loss of calories and fluid in the urine. This improves cardiovascular health.
Systolic blood pressure may be reduced due to diuresis from SGLT2 inhibitors. This improves the cardiovascular health of patients with high and normal blood pressure. Also monitor for dehydration and hypotension.
Hyperkalemia (>5.5 mEq/mL) may be seen in patients with renal impairment. This may be due to increased NaCl delivery to the distal tubule because of SGLT2 inhibition causing a transient inhibition on RAAS.
UTIs may be increased due to glycosuria creating an ideal environment for bacteria or fungi to grow. A rare but serious possible infection is necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum (Fournier's gangrene), which is a flesh eating infection.
SGLT2 inhibitors are contraindicated in patients with eGFR <30 mL/minute. The risk of precipitating hyperkalemia or diabetic ketoacidosis is too high.
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