Diabetes drug Actos linked to bladder cancer

This week on the Beasley Allen Report, host Gibson Vance welcomes Beasley Allen lawyer Roger Smith. Roger is an attorney in the firm’s Mass Torts section and is working on cases where people taking the Type II diabetes medication Actos have developed bladder cancer. Actos is manufactured by Takeda Pharmaceuticals.

Recently, the FDA issued a warning saying people who have been taking the drug for a year or longer have an increased risk of developing bladder cancer. Interim results from a 10-year American study found long-term Actos users had 40 percent more bladder cancers than people who never took the drug. Bladder cancer kills about 15,000 people per year in the U.S. The drug also may be linked to congestive heart failure.

In the past, Roger also worked on cases involving other diabetes drugs, Rezulin and Avandia, which were also linked to liver failure and congestive heart failure, respectively. Rezulin was taken off the market in 2000, and Avandia use was severely restricted in 2010. In addition to litigation surrounding Actos, Roger also is working on cases involving the antidepressant Zoloft, which has been linked to birth defects in babies born to mothers who took the drug during pregnancy.


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