New Canadian Study Confirms Link Between Actos and Bladder Cancer
On June 15, 2011, the FDA released a safety announcement warning patients and physicians of the potential link between the diabetes drug Actos and bladder cancer. At the time, the agency based their statement on the results of an ongoing epidemiological study that found an increased risk in those using the drug for more than a year, and for those using the highest doses.
Now, a new Canadian analysis of previously published studies confirms the link, concluding that taking Actos raised the risk of bladder cancer by about one-fifth. The study was published in the July 3, 2012 issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
Study confirms risk of Actos bladder cancer
Following the FDA warning in 2011, the French Medicines Agency suspended sales of Actos, and later that summer, manufacturer Takeda implemented an Actos recall in France. It was about this time that patients began seeking the advice of an Actos lawyer, in an effort to hold Takeda liable for their injuries.
In this latest analysis of study results, lead author Jeffrey A. Johnson, the Canada Research Chair in Diabetes Health Outcomes, and his colleagues reviewed the data from ten studies on drugs like Actos (called “thiazolidinediones”). The study participants totaled 2.6 million, with 3,643 diagnosed with bladder cancer. Overall, the researchers found that Actos increased the risk of bladder cancer by 22 percent.
Evidence supports Actos lawyer claims
These study results come on the heels of another study on Actos bladder cancer published in the May 31, 2012 issue of the British Medical Journal. Researchers at McGill University in Montreal tracked over 115,000 patients, and found that those taking Actos for more than two years doubled their risk of bladder cancer. In addition, they reported that type II diabetes patients using Actos were at an 83 percent higher risk of the disease than those who had never taken the medication. They added that these results were specific to Actos, as another similar diabetes drug, Avandia, did not result in an elevated risk.
An Actos lawyer is likely to use all these studies to support claims made in an Actos lawsuit. As to why Actos may increase the risk of bladder cancer, researchers aren’t sure, but they have a theory. According to some animal studies, Actos can cause crystals to form that may irritate the bladder, and potentially open the door to cancer development.