Pioglitazone, more commonly known as Actos, is an oral diabetic medication that is prescribed to adults with Type 2 diabetes. In light of recent health concern’s surrounding Avandia, a similar drug classified in the same family of medicine, Actos has grown significantly in popularity.
Actos Linked to Bladder Cancer
After analysis of five-year’s worth of data at the interim of a ten-year long study, the FDA is informing the public that individuals who have used Actos for over a year are 40 percent more likely to develop bladder cancer. The FDA has since required the addition of a Black Box warning label to inform consumers of the increased risk involved in taking Actos, as manufacturers of the drug failed to adequately warn patients of the danger of developing bladder cancer.
Studies similar to the FDA’s research have been conducted in France, with similar results. Because of the increased possibility of developing bladder cancer with Actos use, France has suspended all use of pioglitazone, the active ingredient in Actos. Following suit, Germany has recommended to not begin pioglitazone treatments in new patients.
If you have been using Actos and develop any of the following symptoms, contact your physician immediately. Shortly after, contact a dangerous drug lawyer to see if you have cause for an Actos lawsuit. Common Actos side effects include:
- Pain during urination
- Urgent need to urinate
- Back or lower abdominal pain
- Blood in urine
Former Actos Patients Are Winning Lawsuits
Takeda Pharmaceutical Co., the maker of Actos, is the subject of over 8,000 lawsuits mainly consolidated in Louisiana, West Virginia, California, and Pennsylvania. A jury in Pennsylvania recently awarded $2 million to a patient who contracted bladder cancer after taking the drug, after a federal judge determined that the company’s actions justified punitive damages.
In addition, a West Virginia jury also ordered Takeda to pay a $155,000 as a penalty for intentionally destroying documents about Actos. Jurors concluded that Takeda officials had intentionally destroyed paper documents, deleted emails, and wiped hard drives which could have proved that the diabetes drug caused the plaintiff’s cancer.
Attorneys for Actos plaintiffs believe that the penalty may spell disaster for Takeda. Now that a jury has decided that the company intentionally hid damaging information about the drug, lawsuits may be easier for plaintiffs to win, and settlements may be forthcoming.
At Lewis & Keller, we believe that the manufacturers of dangerous drugs like Actos should be held accountable when a patient is put at risk by using their products. If you or a loved one has suffered adverse side effects after using Actos, contact an Actos lawyer as soon as possible to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation to explore your legal options.