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According to a recent FDA warning, those who take Actos for more than one year are 40 percent more likely to develop bladder cancer than those never exposed to Actos. Multiple studies have shown a connection between instances of bladder cancer and users who took Actos for more than one year or were exposed to the highest cumulative dose.

If you or loved one suffered a heart attack or diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking the diabetes drug Actos, please call the Texas Actos law firm of Hughes Ellzey, LLP at 888-350-3931 or complete our Actos Questionnaire for a free consultation. You may be able to file a claim against Actos manufacturer Takeda Pharmaceuticals for compensation. Damages may include medical expenses, loss of income, mental anguish, physical impairment and pain and suffering.

Actos Linked to Increased Risk of Bladder Cancer

The medical literature published to date indicates that Actos increases the risk of urinary bladder cancer. The risk increases significantly in individuals who have taken Actos for more than two years or who have ingested cumulative doses of Actos of 28,000 mg or higher. Takeda was aware of the risk of bladder cancer as early as the pre-clinical carcinogenicity studies, which showed an increase in drug-induced tumors in the bladders of rats.

The FDA recently issued a drug safety communication warning to patients and health professionals that use of pioglitazone (Actos—Takeda) for more than one year may be associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer. A French study, conducted by the nation’s health insurance agency, examined cancer rates and found an increasing risk of bladder cancer associated with Actos use.

The French study conducted between 2006 and 2009 found a statistically significant correlation between exposure to Actos and the occurrence of bladder cancer. After the study was released, the use of Actos was suspended in France. German health regulators have also advised their doctors not to write any new Actos prescriptions for patients. These results are similar to those obtained in the United States by a Kaiser Permanente Northern California study.

Reuters (6/1/12) reported that, according to a study published online in British Medical Journal, the diabetes medication Actos (pioglitazone) may be linked to an increased risk of bladder cancer.

HealthDay (6/1/12, Reinberg) reported that investigators "collected data on nearly 116,000 people treated for diabetes from 1988 to 2009 and listed in the General Practice Research Database, which contains records from more than 600 medical offices in the United Kingdom. During almost five years of follow-up, 470 patients were diagnosed with bladder cancer. Among patients who had taken Actos, the researchers found an 83 percent increase in the relative risk for bladder cancer."

MedPage Today (6/1/12, Walsh) added that "patients with type 2 diabetes who were ever treated with pioglitazone had an 83% higher risk for bladder cancer (adjusted rate ratio 1.83, 95% CI 1.10 to 3.05) than those who had never used the thiazolidinedione." The investigators reported that "this was a drug-specific effect, because patients taking rosiglitazone (Avandia) did not have an elevated risk (RR 1.14, 95% CI 0.78 to 1.68)." The findings from "this analysis differed from those of a study being presented this week at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, which suggested that the bladder cancer risk was a class effect for glitazones." Also covering the story was the UK's Telegraph (6/1/12, Adams).

Urinary Bladder Cancer Lawsuit

Bladder cancer is clearly diagnosed, and is occurring with alarming prevalence in non-smoking Actos users. The number of bladder cancer cases has been surprising, given its prevalence in the normal baseline population.

Symptoms of bladder cancer may include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Bloody urine
  • Painful urination
  • Urinary frequency
  • Urinary urgency
  • Urine leakage
  • Bone pain or tenderness
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue

In September 2010 the FDA issued a warning about the bladder cancer risks associated with Actos use, and required Takeda to amend its Actos warning label to include the information on urinary bladder cancer. In 2011, doctors and patients were notified of the increased risk of bladder cancer. Unfortunately, since its introduction, millions of prescriptions of Actos have been written and tens of thousands of people have been exposed. And many of those Actos users who have now been diagnosed with urinary bladder cancer are wondering-was my cancer caused by Actos? Unfortunately for many, the answer is clearly “yes.”

The latest study by a major health insurance company shows bladder cancer is just one of the potentially fatal side effects cause by Actos. The study tracked patients’ use of the drug over a ten-year period and found they developed a higher risk of bladder cancer when they used the drug for 12 months or longer.

Texas Actos Cancer Lawyers

If you believe your loved one’s death from a heart attack or bladder cancer may have been caused by Actos use, the surviving spouse or other family members often can file a wrongful death claim for compensation. Call today 888-350-3931 or complete our Actos Questionnaire for a free consultation with the Texas Actos lawyers at Hughes Ellzey, LLP.

Lawsuits have already been filed against Takeda Pharmaceuticals by Actos victims claiming that use of the diabetes drug caused them to develop bladder cancer. Legal experts predict that lawsuits could number in the thousands. If a person has suffered a heart attack or been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos, he or she deserves compensation for the associated physical damages, financial burdens and emotional suffering.

Our law firm is dedicated to protecting the rights of innocent consumers who have been harmed by dangerous drugs. We believe in holding pharmaceutical companies accountable for their negligent actions, and we pursue the highest compensation for our clients. Our skilled attorneys are experienced in successful personal injury litigation.

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