The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued a warning about a very popular diabetes drug by the name of Actos.
The drug has been a real cash cow for Japan’s Takeda Pharmaceuticals bringing in close to $5.0 billion in worldwide sales. However, U.S. drug regulators have now published an alert saying that Actos could increase the risk of bladder cancer if used for more than a year.
In fact, the FDA said that it is adding this information to the label for the drug after reviewing the preliminary five-year results of an ongoing 10-year study.
This announcement comes after France and Germany suspended sales of Actos last week due to similar worries about a possible risk of bladder cancer. The FDA said that studies showed that patients who had the longest exposure to Actos, and those taking the highest cumulative dose of the drug, had an increased risk of bladder cancer.
About 2.3 million patients filled a prescription for the drug from January to October of 2010, the FDA said. The FDA said that it will continue to evaluate data from the ongoing 10-year epidemiological study, and will also review the results from a French study, which prompted the suspension of Actos in France.
For those with diabetes, high levels of blood glucose, also called high blood sugar, can cause health problems. These problems include heart disease, heart attacks, strokes, kidney disease, nerve damage, digestive problems, eye disease, and tooth and gum problems.
Diabetics can try to prevent health problems by keeping their blood glucose levels on target.
If you are worried about your blood sugar, remember that you need to choose foods wisely and be physically active to avoid the prescription side effects of taking diabetes medications. Learn what the G.I. Index is and get your doctor’s advice about keeping your blood sugar at normal levels.
Dr. Victor Marchione received his Bachelor of Science Degree in 1973 and his Medical Degree from the University of Messina in 1981. He has been licensed and practicing medicine in New York and New Jersey for over 20 years.
Dr. Marchione is a respected leader in the field of smoking cessation and pulmonary medicine. He has been featured on ABC News and World Report, CBS Evening News with Dan Rather and the NBC Today Show and is an editor at the popular Doctor's Health Press website.
Dr. Marchione has also served as Principal Investigator in at least a dozen clinical research projects relating to serious ailments such as bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
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