Product News and Recalls

Additional warnings for diabetes drug

A story by ABC News reports on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s changes to prescribing information for the diabetes drug Byetta, in response to reports about kidney problems.

According to the story, the FDA received 78 reports of kidney function problems from patients taking Byetta between April 2005 and October 2008, most of which occurred in patients with pre-existing kidney disease or one or more risk factors for developing kidney problems.

Studies have also linked Byetta, as well as the diabetes drug Januvia, to pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. Another study has linked Byetta to an increased risk of thyroid cancer.

The ABC News story says nausea, vomiting and diarrhea are the most common side effects associated with the drug. Those side effects may contribute to the development of kidney malfunction, which in turn can lead to a build-up of waste products in the blood.

The eventual result could be serious illness and potentially life-threatening conditions.

The report quotes Dr. Amy Egan, of the Division of Metabolism and Endocrinology Products at the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, as saying: “Health-care professionals and patients taking Byetta should pay close attention to any signs or symptoms of kidney problems.”

You should consult with a doctor if you have any ongoing symptoms or health concerns, and before making any changes in medication. You should also consult with a Lopez McHugh attorney if you or a loved one was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after taking Januvia or Byetta.

See the story here: