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Diabetes Metab J. 2015 Jun;39(3):177-87. doi: 10.4093/dmj.2015.39.3.177.

The Role of Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor Agonists in Type 2 Diabetes: Understanding How Data Can Inform Clinical Practice in Korea.

Author information

1
Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Kyung Hee University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
2
Department of Endocrinology, Gachon University College of Medicine, Incheon, Korea.
3
Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Hallym University Sacred Heart Hospital, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea.

Abstract

Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1RAs) reduce glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c, 0.5% to 1.0%), and are associated with moderate weight loss and a relatively low risk of hypoglycemia. There are differences between Asian and non-Asian populations. We reviewed available data on GLP-1RAs, focusing on Korean patients, to better understand their risk/benefit profile and help inform local clinical practice. Control of postprandial hyperglycemia is important in Asians in whom the prevalence of post-challenge hyperglycemia is higher (vs. non-Asians). The weight lowering effects of GLP-1RAs are becoming more salient as the prevalence of overweight and obesity among Korean patients increases. The higher rate of gastrointestinal adverse events amongst Asian patients in clinical trials may be caused by higher drug exposure due to the lower body mass index of the participants (vs. non-Asian studies). Data on the durability of weight loss, clinically important health outcomes, safety and optimal dosing in Korean patients are lacking. Use of GLP-1RAs is appropriate in several patient groups, including patients whose HbA1c is uncontrolled, especially if this is due to postprandial glucose excursions and patients who are overweight or obese due to dietary problems (e.g., appetite control). The potential for gastrointestinal adverse events should be explained to patients at treatment initiation to facilitate the promotion of better compliance.

KEYWORDS:

Clinical management; Diabetes mellitus, type 2; Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists; Glycemic control; Hyperglycemia; Postprandial period

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