Yet Another Study Connects Long-Term Use of Actos to Bladder Cancer

A study published this week in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute is just one of many to confirm a link between the diabetes drug Actos and bladder cancer.

In this study, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania found a two- to three-times higher rate of bladder cancer amongst Actos patients, and confirmed that the risk of bladder cancer goes up the longer a patient uses Actos.

The researchers studied data from July 1, 2000 to August 31, 2012 concerning roughly 60,000 United Kingdom Actos patients.  Researchers found that the risk of bladder cancer doubles when a person uses Actos for fewer than five years, and the risk more than triples for patients who take the drug for more than five years.
Actos (pioglitazone) is made by Takeda Pharmaceuticals and was approved to treat type II diabetes in the United States in July 1999.  Actos is a pill that is taken once daily, and it increases the body’s sensitivity to insulin.  Similar medications include ActoPlus Met and Duetact.

The first public concerns about a link between Actos and bladder cancer came up in September 2012 when the FDA disclosed that they were investigating this potential risk after receiving interim data from an ongoing Takeda study.

A French study published in June 2011 confirmed a higher than acceptable rate of bladder cancer diagnoses amongst Actos patients, leading to an Actos recall in France and Germany.
Actos has remained on the market in the U.S., though the FDA issued Actos bladder cancer warnings in August 2010.

So far in 2012, multiple studies have confirmed the link between long-term Actos use and bladder cancer.  In a British Medical Journal study from June 2012, researchers found that Actos use for two years may double the risk of bladder cancer.  A study presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology’s annual meeting in May found that all drugs belonging to the same class as Actos, thiazolidinediones such as Avandia and Rezulin, also pose the same risk.  Rezulin was recalled in the U.S. in 2000 and Avandia has been severely restricted in the U.S. in the last year.

Contact an Actos Lawyer

Many people who have been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos have opted to file dangerous drug lawsuits in pursuit of substantial compensation for their damages, including medical bills and pain and suffering.  The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation consolidated all federal Actos lawsuits in December 2011.  If you have been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos, you may also be entitled to compensation.  Contact a medical product liability lawyer to learn more about Actos lawsuits in a free consultation.

Aug. 23, 2012 | Tags: Actos, Dangerous Drugs

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