Oral Hypoglycemic Agents Being Studied or Approved for Use in Children

Medication ClassMajor Mechanisms of ActionExamples of DrugsAdverse Effects
BiguanidesDecrease hepatic glucose productionMetformin*Gastrointestinal upset
Lactic acidosis in patients with renal failure and conditions predisposing to hypovolemic dehydration and acidosis
α-Glucosidase inhibitorsReversible inhibition of gastrointestinal sucrase, glucoamylase, dextrinase, maltase and isomaltase enzymesAcarboseGastrointestinal upset
MeglitinidesInsulin secretagoguesRepaglinideHypoglycemia
NateglinideWeight gain
SulfonylureasInsulin secretagoguesGlimepirideHypoglycemia
GlyburideWeight gain
ThiazolidinedionesDecrease hepatic glucose productionRosiglitazoneEdema
PioglitazoneWeight gain
Increase glucose uptake in tissues (muscle)Anemia
Increased liver enzymes (liver damage)
Inhibit lipolysis
  • * Approved for use in children.