Effects of sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors on the cardiovascular and renal complications of type 2 diabetes

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

2 Scopus citations


Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors (SGLT-2is) have been shown to mitigate the risks of cardiovascular (CV) and renal complications in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and CV risk factors or CV disease (CVD). In CV outcomes trials (CVOTs) of patients with T2D and established CVD or multiple CV risk factors, empagliflozin and canagliflozin were associated with significant reductions in the risks of major adverse CV events (MACE), hospitalization for heart failure (HF) and kidney disease progression. In the DECLARE–TIMI 58 study, in which the majority of patients did not have established CVD, dapagliflozin was associated with significant reductions in the composite end point of CV death or hospitalization for HF and was noninferior to placebo with regard to MACE; although patients had relatively good renal function, dapagliflozin also showed renal benefits similar to those seen with empagliflozin and canagliflozin. This article reviews the increased risk of CVD and renal disease in patients with T2D and discusses the potential mechanisms of the cardioprotective and renoprotective effects of SGLT-2i therapy. The observed improvements in CV and renal outcomes with SGLT-2is in CVOTs suggest a class effect in this patient population and have influenced treatment guidelines for the way add-on therapy to metformin is initiated in patients with T2D and high CV risk. The overall cardioprotective and renoprotective effects of SGLT-2is in patients with T2D and high CV risk are most likely attributable to multiple mechanisms, including cardiac, haemodynamic, metabolic, anti-inflammatory and renal effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalDiabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019



  • canagliflozin
  • cardiovascular disease
  • dapagliflozin
  • empagliflozin
  • SGLT-2 inhibitor
  • type 2 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology

Cite this