The diabetes drug Actos has been linked to a 40 percent increased risk of bladder cancer.
Actos was first approved in 1999 to help lower blood sugar in patients with type 2 diabetes. Since 2007 when competing diabetes drug Avandia was shown to increase risk of heart attack, Actos sales have escalated, swelling to $4.3 billion in 2010. The popularity of Actos is of particular concern now that the drug has been shown by several studies to increase user’s risk of bladder cancer.
FDA Announces Actos’ Bladder Cancer Risk
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a safety alert and required a label change for Actos in August 2011 regarding the risk of bladder cancer for users taking Actos for more than one year or taking the highest dose. The FDA’s announcement that the use of Actos can lead to a 40 percent increased risk of bladder cancer was based on a study of more than 200,000 patients with type 2 diabetes.
The French Medicines Agency has suspended sales of Actos after reviewing a cohort study conducted by the French health insurance linking Actos use to bladder cancer. Drug regulators in Germany have also disallowed new prescriptions of Actos, pending further investigation of the drug. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) began a review of Actos in March 2011, which has not yet been concluded.
Actos Lawsuits Filed
Lawsuits have already been filed in the U.S. against Actos manufacturer Takeda Pharmaceuticals. Between January and October 2010 alone, 2.3 million patients filled prescriptions for Actos, according to the FDA. Based on the 40 percent increased risk, the number of people who may have developed bladder cancer since the drug’s approval in 1999 could easily number in the thousands. Legal experts expect that Takeda Pharmaceuticals will face many more lawsuits.
If you or someone you know took Actos for more than a year and developed bladder cancer, you deserve compensation for the associated financial, emotional and physical burdens. Takeda Pharmaceuticals had a legal and moral responsibility to thoroughly research all possible harmful side effects of Actos and notify users, doctors and the FDA of any risks. Unfortunately, until the FDA’s mandated label change, the Actos label did not warn consumers of the increased risk of bladder cancer. By filing a claim, you can get the compensation you deserve, and you can help hold Takeda responsible for this negligence.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos, contact the attorneys of Childers, Schlueter & Smith for a free case evaluation and consultation. Our experienced team of drug injury lawyers will work closely with you and see to it that you are compensated for your injuries.