A study conducted at the UCLA Larry L. Hillblom Islet Research Center found that Januvia, a drug used to treat patients with Type 2 diabetes, may increase a patient’s risk of pancreatic cancer. Because pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers, Alabama Januvia lawsuit attorneys are noting that patients who have taken the drug may be eligible to file an Alabama Januvia lawsuit.
History of Januvia
Januvia was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on October 16, 2006 and is manufactured by Merck & Company. The generic name for the drug is sitagliptin phosphate, and it is considered a sister drug to Janumet (generic form sitagliptin metaphormin). The drug is typically taken once daily, and was among the first in a new class of medication that allows the body to lower blood sugar using incretins, which occur naturally within the body.
How Januvia Works
In people with Type 2 Diabetes, the body does not make enough insulin, or the insulin does not work properly, to eliminate the glucose in your bloodstream after you eat. For some, the liver is not working properly, which causes a rise in blood sugar. Januvia works by blocking a substance in the body, known as DPP-4, which blocks the signal to the pancreas to create more insulin while at the same time telling the liver to make less glucose. However, for some patients, forcing the pancreas to make additional insulin may lead to an increased risk of pancreatitis, and, potentially, pancreatic cancer. The risk of a potentially deadly cancer could result in a significant number of Januvia lawsuits, in which case victims will need to seek the help of experienced Alabama Januvia lawsuit attorneys.
Alabama Januvia Lawsuit Attorneys Note the Risks Associated with Januvia
After the drug was released on the market, 88 cases of acute pancreatitis, including two cases of severe versions of the disease known as hemorrhagic or necrotizing pancreatitis, were reported to the FDA in three years. However, according to a report in the British Medical Journal, the FDA continues to downplay the dangers of Januvia. The British report, published in June 2013, indicated that the FDA and the European Medicines Agency (EMA) were not “acting aggressively,” although both agencies stated that they were reviewing the issue. To further the chance of Januvia lawsuits, the article says that drug manufacturers failed to perform safety studies, and access to raw data regarding the drug has reportedly been been denied. The FDA and EMA also have allegedly not required the drug companies to perform the necessary studies to confirm the safety of the drugs.
Deborah Cohen, the Investigations Editor for the British Medical Journal, says that the issues found in evidence that has been unpublished to date, such as abnormal changes in the pancreas of animals, raised human pancreatic-enzyme concentrations, thyroid neoplasm reports, along with diagnosed cases of pancreatitis, some severe, pose serious questions regarding the safety of the drug. Edwin A.M. Gaile, MB, Bchir, the Southmead Hospital Emeritus Professor of Diabetic Medicine says that doctors “should be very worried” about these reports. The report continues by saying that doctors have not been informed about the dangers of the class of drugs which include Januvia, which means they potentially cannot inform their patients of the dangers.
Recently, the FDA and EMA decided that the available data was “inconclusive,” and both agencies decided to wait until the results of two independent studies were available, which will not be until 2014. The FDA required the manufacturer to include warnings on the drug of the risks of pancreatitis, and that patients with a history of the illness should not be prescribed Januvia. However, many of the patients who suffered from the illness after taking Januvia had no previous history of pancreatitis, leading some to wonder how a doctor is to know which patients are at risk and which are not, further prompting discussion of Januvia lawsuits, notes Alabama Januvia lawsuit attorneys. The delay by the FDA and EMA to not make a decision on the dangers of Januvia until independent studies are released in 2014 could lead to additional patients suffering from pancreatitis, and even others developing one of the deadliest forms of cancer.
It Is Important to Contact an Alabama Januvia Lawsuit Attorney
If you or a loved one has taken Januvia and suffered from pancreatitis, or if a loved one developed pancreatic cancer after taking the drug, you may have a claim to compensation similar to those in Januvia lawsuits currently taking place. Contact Attorney Group for Alabama today for your free consultation. We will answer your questions, help you decide if you have a claim to compensation you wish to pursue, and connect you with an Alabama Januvia lawsuit attorney that can handle your case. So contact Attorney Group for Alabama today.