Potential role of sodium glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors in the treatment of hypertension

Ilkka Tikkanen, Robert Chilton, Odd Erik Johansen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Purpose of review: The majority of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) have hypertension requiring combination therapy. Sodium glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors are novel glucose-lowering drugs with shared and potentially unique beneficial effects on cardiovascular risk beyond glycemic control. This review focuses on the potential role of SGLT2 inhibitors in the treatment of hypertension associated with T2DM. Recent findings: SGLT2 inhibitors reduce office SBP by 3-5 mmHg and DBP by 2-3 mmHg across all class members. Corresponding clinically meaningful, significant blood pressure (BP) lowering effects have been confirmed using 24 h ambulatory BP monitoring. SGLT2 inhibitors reduce BP irrespective of the type of background antihypertensive medication. The antihypertensive actions of SGLT2 inhibitors involve several mechanisms including modest diuretic effects, weight loss, and direct vascular effects leading to decreased arterial stiffness and vascular resistance. The first-in class cardiovascular outcome trial with empagliflozin showed a significant reduction in a composite endpoint of cardiovascular death, nonfatal stroke, and nonfatal myocardial infarction in T2DM patients at high risk for cardiovascular events. Summary: SGLT2 inhibitors have clinically significant antihypertensive effects. SGLT2 inhibition could be a potentially useful supplement to the BP-lowering treatment armamentarium in patients with T2DM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-86
Number of pages6
JournalCurrent opinion in nephrology and hypertension
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • blood pressure
  • canagliflozin
  • cardiovascular
  • dapagliflozin
  • empagliflozin
  • hypertension
  • review
  • sodium glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors
  • type 2 diabetes mellitus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Nephrology


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