What happens if I drink a lot while I am taking metformin?

Drinking a lot of alcohol while taking metformin (Glucophage, Fortamet), especially over a short period of time (known as "binge drinking"), increases your risk of a side effect called lactic acidosis. This is a buildup of lactic acid in the bloodstream, which in some cases can cause death.

Drinking even small amounts of alcohol when you're taking metformin -- a drug used to control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes -- can also increase the risk of lactic acidosis. You should not drink alcohol while on this medicine.

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