MONDAY, April 16, 2021 (HealthDay News) — There are racial/ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic disparities apparent in access to sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitor treatment for patients with diabetes, according to a study published online April 15 in JAMA Network Open.

Lauren A. Eberly, M.D., from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues assessed whether there are race/ethnicity, gender, and socioeconomic disparities in SGLT2 inhibitor use among U.S. patients with type 2 diabetes. Data from the Optum Clinformatics Data Mart were used to identify eligible commercially insured patients with diabetes (Oct. 1, 2015, to July 30, 2019).

The researchers found that of the 934,737 identified patients with type 2 diabetes (mean age, 65.4 years; 50.7 percent female; 57.6 percent White), 8.7 percent were treated with an SGLT2 inhibitor during the study period. The percentage of patients with type 2 diabetes treated with an SGLT2 inhibitor increased from 3.8 percent in 2015 to 11.9 percent in 2019. The rate of SGLT2 inhibitor use increased among patients with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular or kidney disease but was lower than among all patients with type 2 diabetes. Black race (adjusted odds ratio, 0.83), Asian race (adjusted odds ratio, 0.94), and female gender (adjusted odds ratio, 0.84) were associated with lower rates of SGLT2 inhibitor use, while there was a higher rate of SGLT2 inhibitor use associated with higher median household income (adjusted odds ratios compared with <$50 000, 1.08 and 1.05 for ≥$100,000 and $50,000 to $99,999, respectively).

“Racial/ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic inequities were present in access to SGLT2 inhibitor treatment, which if unaddressed, may widen disparities in kidney and cardiovascular outcomes in the United States,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to Somatus Scientific and/or Boston Scientific.

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