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Review article: Medical guidelines

Vol. 153 No. 4 (2023)

Swiss recommendations of the Society for Endocrinology and Diabetes (SGED/SSED) for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (2023)

  • Giacomo Gastaldi
  • Barbara Lucchini
  • Sebastien Thalmann
  • Stephanie Alder
  • Markus Laimer
  • Michael Brändle
  • Peter Wiesli
  • Roger Lehmann
  • Working group of the SGED/SSED
Cite this as:
Swiss Med Wkly. 2023;153:40060


As a first step, the authors emphasise lifestyle changes (increased physical activity, stopping smoking), blood pressure control, and lowering cholesterol). The initial medical treatment should always be a combination treatment with metformin and a sodium-glucose transporter 2 (SGLT-2) inhibitor or a glucagon-like 1 peptide (GLP-1) receptor agonist. Metformin is given first and up-titrated, followed by SGLT-2 inhibitors or GLP-1 receptor agonists. In persons with type 2 diabetes, if the initial double combination is not sufficient, a triple combination (SGLT-2 inhibitor, GLP-1 receptor agonist, and metformin) is recommended. This triple combination has not been officially tested in cardiovascular outcome trials, but there is more and more real-world experience in Europe and in the USA that proves that the triple combination with metformin, SGLT-2 inhibitor, and GLP-1 receptor agonist is the best treatment to reduce 3-point MACE, total mortality, and heart failure as compared to other combinations. The treatment with sulfonylurea is no longer recommended because of its side effects and higher mortality compared to the modern treatment with SGLT-2 inhibitors and GLP-1 receptor agonists. If the triple combination is not sufficient to reduce the HbA1c to the desired target, insulin treatment is necessary. A quarter of all patients with type 2 diabetes (sometimes misdiagnosed) require insulin treatment. If insulin deficiency is the predominant factor at the outset of type 2 diabetes, the order of medications has to be reversed: insulin first and then cardio-renal protective medications (SGLT-2 inhibitors, GLP-1 receptor agonists).


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