Horm Metab Res 1996; 28(9): 430-433
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-979832

© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Combined Therapy With a Sulfonylurea Plus Evening Insulin: Safe, Reliable, and Becoming Routine

M. C. Riddle
  • Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Clinical Nutrition, Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, Oregon, USA.
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
23 April 2007 (online)


Whether a sulfonylurea may be used together with insulin for treating NIDDM has been controversial. One view, based on older studies, has been that the additional benefit is too small or the level of glucose control achieved usually too poor to recommend this method. More recent studies of a more specific way of combining a sulfonylurea with insulin are more supportive. When a single injection of insulin taken in the evening is added to a sulfonylurea at the time of secondary failure of the sulfonylurea alone, glycemic control is quite simply and consistently restored to acceptable levels. At this time in the natural history of NIDDM, evening insulin combined therapy is more effective than a single injection of insulin alone, and just as effective as a more complex multiple-injection regimen without an oral agent. A recent multicenter trial of a new sulfonylurea, glimepiride, in combination with a single injection of 70/30 insulin before dinner has confirmed that this approach is safe and more consistently effective than insulin alone for obese patients beginning insulin in a setting resembling clinical practice. The available evidence suggests this form of combined therapy is suitable for routine use.