Background: Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a chronic progressive lung disease with high morbidity and limited treatment options. Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a common comorbid illness among patients with IPF and is often treated with metformin, the first-line agent in the management of T2DM. There is growing evidence demonstrating metformin’s anti-fibrotic properties; however, there is little real-world clinical data regarding its potential effectiveness in IPF. This study aims to evaluate the clinical benefit of metformin in patients with IPF and T2DM. Methods: This nationwide cohort study used de-identified administrative claims data from OptumLabs® Data Warehouse to identify 3599 adults with IPF and concomitant T2DM between January 1, 2014 and June 30, 2019. Two cohorts were created: a cohort treated with metformin (n = 1377) and a cohort not treated with metformin (n = 2222). A final 1:1 propensity score-matched cohort compared 1100 patients with IPF and T2DM receiving metformin to those with both diagnoses but not receiving metformin; matching accounted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, residence region, year, medications, oxygen use, smoking status, healthcare use, and comorbidities. Outcomes were all-cause mortality (primary) and hospitalizations (secondary). Results: Among 2200 patients with IPF and T2DM included in this matched analysis, metformin therapy was associated with a reduction in all-cause mortality (hazard ratio [HR], 0.46; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.36–0.58; p < 0.001) and hospitalizations (HR, 0.82; 95% CI, 0.72–0.93; p = 0.003) compared to patients not receiving metformin. Conclusions: Among patients with IPF and T2DM, metformin therapy may be associated with improved clinical outcomes. However, further investigation with randomized clinical trials is necessary prior to metformin’s broad implementation in the clinical management of IPF.
- Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis
- Interstitial lung disease
- Type 2 diabetes mellitus
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine