OBJECTIVE To analyse prescription patterns for antihyperglycemic drugs and co-medication in a group of diabetic patients regarding demographic variables. METHOD Observational, cross-sectional study performed from the prescriptions of diabetic patients who attended a public health service in Argentina during 2008-2009. The programme Epidat 3.1 was used for statistical analysis. RESULTS We included 813 patients, among which 455 (56%) were women. There was a greater prevalence of women under 40 years old (OR: 1.64; 95% CI: 1.05-2.56). Sixty-six point seven percent (n=542) of the population used at least one drug acting on the cardiovascular system, finding a positive statistical association between frequency of use and age (P<.00001). CONCLUSIONS We found that there was a higher prevalence of women than men with early onset of type 2 diabetes mellitus. There were no differences between the sexes regarding frequency of use of drugs for the cardiovascular system.