If you’re on a diabetes medication the FDA’s latest warning about two common drug ingredients will no doubt have you reaching for the bottle to check the label.
And with over 440,000 folks having received a prescription for one of the five drugs containing these ingredients in 2015 alone, that’s a really good idea.
Common diabetes drugs could raise heart failure risk
The FDA recently completed reviewing two major trials on heart patients and reached the startling conclusion that a class of common diabetes drugs—dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors—could raise your risk for heart failure.
It turns out heart disease patients taking type-2 diabetes drugs containing either saxagliptin or alogliptin were hospitalized for heart failure significantly more often than those on a placebo.
Now you likely won’t recognize either of those ingredient names, but you very well could be taking one of the five common diabetes drugs that contain them:
- Onglyza (saxagliptin)
- Kombiglyze XR (saxagliptin/metformin ext-rel)
- Nesina (alogliptin)
- Kazano (alogliptin/metformin)
- Oseni (alogliptin/pioglitazone)
FDA Safety Alert issued on 5 diabetes drugs
The increase in risk, although small, was considered substantial enough to issue a safety communication.
The FDA Safety Alert warns if you already suffer with heart or kidney disease your risk may be even higher.
According to the FDA, 35 out of every 1,000 patients taking a drug containing saxagliptin (Onglyza, Kombiglyze XR) were hospitalized for heart failure, compared to 28 on the placebo.
And 39 out of every 1,000 patients on a drug containing alogliptin (Nesina, Kazano, or Oseni) were hospitalized for heart failure, compared to 33 on a placebo.
Beware of these heart failure symptoms
The FDA advised doctors to consider taking patients who develop symptoms of heart failure off of any drugs containing saxagliptin or alogliptin.
If you’re currently taking one of the five drugs covered by the FDA warning be on the lookout for the following 5 heart failure symptoms:
- Being short of breath (feeling winded) during daily activities
- Having trouble breathing when lying down
- Unexplained tiredness, weakness, or fatigue
- Unusual weight gain with swelling in your ankles, feet, legs, or stomach
If you experience any of these symptoms you should contact your doctor immediately.
If you’re concerned about your increased heart failure risk on these medications make an appointment to see your doctor to talk about alternatives.
If you know anyone who is taking a diabetes drug please share this important warning with them. It very well could save their life!
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