Users of Actos, a diabetes drug, face a 40% increased risk of developing bladder cancer
Actos and Bladder Cancer
Mounting research indicates that Actos users face a 40% increased risk of bladder cancer after taking Actos for a year or at the highest cumulative dose. The American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and drug regulation agencies in France and Germany have alerted doctors and patients of the increased risk of bladder cancer, but for many Actos victims, it is too late to prevent this devastating side effect.
Actos, a top selling diabetes drug manufactured by Takeda Pharmaceuticals, was approved in 1999 to help lower blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. Sales of Actos skyrocketed in 2007 when competing drug Avandia was banned in Europe and severely limited in the United States after being linked to an increased risk of heart attack. Many doctors and patients turned to Actos for a safer alternative, until research indicated that Actos actually increased users’ risk of developing life-threatening bladder cancer.
FDA Takes Action
In September 2010, the FDA announced that it had begun reviewing data from an ongoing, 10-year study by Takeda evaluating the risk of bladder cancer related to Actos. In June 2011, the FDA issued a Safety Communication based on findings of the 10-year study, stating that use of Actos for more than one year or at the highest cumulative dose increases risk of bladder cancer. Simultaneously, the FDA noted a study conducted in France that had revealed similar bladder cancer dangers. The alert also mentioned that Actos was suspended in parts of Europe based on the findings of the French study.
August 2011 finally brought some real action by the FDA. Although the FDA did not pull Actos from the market, it did require Takeda to update Actos’ warning labels to reflect the increased risk of bladder cancer. Patients who began treatment with Actos from then on would be warned of the bladder cancer risk.
However, the updated label does nothing to help those who have already developed bladder cancer as a result of past Actos use. The only remedy for Actos users diagnosed with cancer is to file a claim for compensation to offset the costs of medical bills, future treatment, and lost income, as well as the burdens of physical and emotional suffering.
Europe Reacts to Actos Bladder Cancer Risk
The French study is the largest and most incriminating in regard to the Actos bladder cancer risk. Based on the findings of a study by the French National Health Insurance Plan, the French Medicines Agency suspended sales of Actos, and German drug regulators prohibited doctors from writing new Actos prescriptions. Unfortunately, the FDA has not taken steps to remove Actos from the market and protect the American public from this dangerous drug.
A number of Actos users have filed suits against Takeda Pharmaceuticals alleging that they’ve suffered bladder cancer as a result of taking the diabetes medication. Currently, all Actos lawsuits have been consolidated into a multi-district litigation under District Judge Rebecca Doherty in the Western District of Louisiana. The MDL is underway, so Actos victims are getting closer to receiving justice.
If you or a loved one has suffered bladder cancer, or if you have lost a family member to bladder cancer that may have been caused by Actos use, you deserve compensation. You deserve to have a voice against the pharmaceutical giant Takeda. You deserve the help of an experienced, aggressive attorney who is not afraid to battle Takeda on your behalf. The law firm of Heygood, Orr & Pearson takes on the pharmaceutical industry and wins, and we will passionately pursue the maximum compensation for you.
What You Can Do
If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos, you deserve compensation. Contact Heygood, Orr & Pearson for a free consultation to learn about the best way to protect your legal rights and interests.