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Recovery from Diabetic Macular Edema in a Diabetic Patient After Minimal Dose of a Sodium Glucose Co-Transporter 2 Inhibitor

Hideyuki Yoshizumi, Tetsushi Ejima, Tetsuhiko Nagao, Masanori Wakisaka

(Department of Metabolism and Endocrinology, Clinical Research Institute, National Hospital Organization Kyushu Medical Center, Fukuoka City, Fukuoka, Japan)

Am J Case Rep 2018; 19:462-466

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.909708

Published: 2018-04-19

BACKGROUND: Diabetic macular edema (DME) causes serious visual impairments in diabetic patients. The standard treatments of DME are intra-vitreous injections of corticosteroids or anti-vascular endothelial growth factor antibodies and pan-photocoagulation. These treatments are unsatisfactory in their effects and impose considerable physical and economic burdens on the patients.
CASE REPORT: A 63-year-old woman was diagnosed as type 2 diabetes with retinopathy 7 years ago. Before the initiation of an SGLT2 inhibitor, the dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor, sitagliptin (50 mg daily), and metformin (250 mg dai- ly) were used for her glycemic control. The level of her hemoglobin A1c had been controlled around 7%. She began to feel decreased visual acuity and blurred vision of her left eye 8 months before the visit to our clin- ic. She was diagnosed as DME, which turned out to be corticosteroid-resistant. Her visual acuity further de- creased to 20/50. Metformin was changed to ipraglifl (25mg/day). Her left visual acuity started to improve after 4 weeks of treatment with ipragliflozin and improved to 20/22 after 24 weeks. The macular edema did not change until 12 weeks of the treatment, however, it decreased prominently after 16 weeks.
CONCLUSIONS: In our patient with steroid-resistant DME, her visual symptoms and macular edema recovered after the initiation of an SGLT2 inhibitor. SGLT2 inhibitors might be a potential candidate for the DME treatment.

Keywords: Diabetes Complications, Diabetic Retinopathy, Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2