There is a class of drugs used to treat diabetes called incretin mimetics. Research has shown that those drugs may be responsible for increased risks to patients for pancreatic cancer and pancreatitis. Some drugs that are included in that classification are Byetta and Januvia.
Byetta and Januvia are drugs that are considered incretin mimetics, which means drugs that mimic incretin hormones. They are designed to help diabetics with type 2 diabetes regulate their blood sugar by increasing incretin hormones that the body normally produces once a meal is eaten, in order to stimulate the production of insulin. Research has shown that these drugs may increase the risk up to six times of pancreas issues in patients that use them in their treatment.
Byetta was approved by the FDA in 2005. By 2007, the FDA already had concerns with high numbers of patients taking the drug who developed pancreatitis and issued an alert. In 2009, the FDA also issued an alert for Januvia. In 2013, the FDA went further and issued another alert warning about the link between the drugs and pancreatic cancer and thyroid cancer.
Pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer are both serious conditions. Pancreatitis involves inflammation of the pancreas and can cause painful conditions. Chronic pancreatitis can reduce life expectancy by about 10 to 15 years, and greatly increases the odds of contracting pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is one of the most aggressive and deadly forms of cancer. Even if caught early, the prognosis is usually poor.
Because of the very serious nature of pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer, there is a serious concern among patients who are taking Byetta or Januvia. Many lawsuits have already been filed for victims of the drugs who have become ill or died after taking the drugs. If you or a loved one has been taking Byetta or Januvia and has been diagnosed with pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer, or thyroid cancer, you should speak with an attorney.
Call the Houston personal injury attorneys at Kennedy Hodges at 855-947-0707. We can help. Call us today to learn more or to schedule a free consultation on your case.