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BMC Endocr Disord. 2006 Jun 21;6:4.

Insulin versus oral agents in the management of Cystic Fibrosis Related Diabetes: a case based study.

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Wright State University School of Medicine, Medicine-Pediatrics Program, Suite 500 Elizabeth Place, Dayton, OH 45408, USA.



Insulin is the recommend therapeutic agent of choice for the management of Cystic Fibrosis Related Diabetes (CFRD), despite only sub-optimal reductions in glycemic control and increased morbidity and mortality reported by centers using this agent. The newer insulin sensitizing agents demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory mechanisms may provide an alternative management option for CFRD.


A prospective case based therapeutic comparison between insulin, sulfonylurea, metformin and thiazolidinedione was observed over one decade with 20 CFRD patients diagnosed using American Diabetes Association guideline standards. Patients entering the study elected treatment based on risk and benefit information provided for treatment options. Patients receiving organ transplant or requiring combination diabetic medications were excluded from the study.


No statistical advantage was achieved regarding overall glycemic control for oral agents over insulin. Additional outcome measures including changes in weight, liver function testing and FEV1 were not statistically significant.


Insulin alone may not be the only therapeutic option in managing CFRD. Oral hypoglycemic agents were equally effective in treating CFRD and may provide an alternative class of agents for patients reluctant in using insulin.

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