Pancreatic Cancer & Type 2 Diabetes Medications

Research has found a causal link from at a number of Type 2 Diabetes medications and pancreatic cancer. These include Byetta, Byudreon, Victoza, Januvia, Janumet, and Tanzeum.

About Incretin Medications

There are many Type 2 Diabetes incretin medications. Some of the most common ones are Byetta, Byudreon, Victoza, Januvia, Janumet, and Tanzeum.   All are an injectable medication used to work with diet and exercise to control blood sugar.

All these medications are part of a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists. These drugs mimic the effects of the body’s natural GLP-1. This hormone reacts to high blood sugar by increasing insulin production. Scientists used a hormone from the saliva of the venomous Gila monster to make this medication.

Link Between Pancreatic Cancer & Type 2 Diabetes Medications

Researchers have found a causal link between Byetta, Byudreon, Victoza, Januvia, Janumet, and Tanzeum and pancreatic cancer. The GLP-1 hormone can cause chronic inflammation of the pancreas, also known as pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is a risk factor for cancer since the inflammation causes rapid cell growth. This rapid growth brings the risk of the body multiplying abnormal cells instead of healthy ones. Therefore, a lesion on a pancreas that normally could take over 40 years to turn into cancer now has been accelerated.

Pancreatic Cancer Symptoms & Risk Factors

The first symptoms of pancreatic cancer often involve digestive and metabolic side effects. Many diabetics find their blood-sugar levels are harder to control. However, doctors normally ignore this as a pancreatic cancer symptom since diabetics often have high blood sugar.  Hence why doctors rarely diagnose Type 2 Diabetics in the early stages of pancreatic cancer.  However, symptoms in general rarely appear in early stages anyway.

Common symptoms

  • Heartburn
  • Abdominal or belly pain
  • Back pain
  • Weight loss
  • Jaundice (yellow skin and/or eyes)
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Itching
  • Malaise (generally feeling ill or tired)
  • Decreased appetite
  • Diabetes
  • High blood sugar

Risk Factors for Pancreatic Cancer

  • Over 65 years old
  • Male
  • African American
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Occupational exposure to toxic substances
  • Family history
  • Genetic diseases

Even More, Evidence Comes to Light

In February 2018, Diabetes Care Journal published a study concerning the risk of incretin drugs and pancreatic cancer. Researchers insist that recent prescription of incretin medications comes with an increased risk of pancreatic cancer. They said the reason is the medication provokes the spread of pancreatitis and event aggravates diabetes. Furthermore, they urged for more studies assessing the risk of pancreatic cancer associated with long-term use of incretin drugs.

No Pancreatic Cancer Warning

Current labeling for incretin drugs warns of pancreatitis. However, there is no warning for pancreatic cancer. The UK and Canada both warn of this deadly side effect. In fact, Germany and Australia are currently reviewing a possible new label change to include pancreatic cancer warnings on their incretin medications.  Also, it doesn’t matter how long you use these medications. Everyone is susceptible after a month of use or 5 years.

Current Pancreatic Cancer & Type 2 Diabetes Medications Lawsuit

Michael Brady Lynch lawsuitIn May 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued safety communications linking the Januvia, Janumet, Byetta, and Victoza to serious complications such as pancreatic cancer. After the agency stated some studies suggested a link between these drugs and pancreatic cancer, the first lawsuits alleging the drugmakers failed to warn about the risk landed in courts across the country.

Later in 2013, the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) consolidated these cases in California federal court in multidistrict litigation (MDL) number 2452, In Re: Incretin Mimetics Products Liability Litigation.

Then in November 2015, the presiding judge, Anthony J. Battaglia, granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants. Summary judgment means the judge dismissed all cases in the MDL. Plaintiff’s attorneys filed an appeal in September 2016 claiming the judge misinterpreted the law.

However, in December 2017 Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the summary judgment. Therefore in January 2018, the case will continue. There are over 1,000 cases in the MDL, and The Michael Brady Lynch Firm is still accepting cases in all 50 states.

Speak to an Attorney Today

If an incretin type 2 diabetes drug harmed you or a loved, you need an attorney with experience helping people who have been harmed by pharmaceutical drugs. The attorneys at the Michael Brady Lynch Firm know what it takes to go up against drug manufacturers to get clients what they need.

How We Can Help

When you experience side effects from a dangerous drug, it can have devastating effects on your entire life. You may be entitled to compensation for their injuries and damages. The types of losses that can be recovered include:

  • Past and future medical expensesinvokana-sad
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of an ability to work; and
  • Pain and suffering

In addition, if a person dies from complications from a drug, family members may be able to recover damages for the wrongful death of their loved one, including:

  • Funeral expenses
  • Medical expenses prior to death
  • Loss of economic support; and
  • Loss of companionship

Therefore, if the conduct of a drug company in manufacturing and selling drug is found to be highly reckless, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the company and deter similar conduct in the future. If a doctor diagnosed you with pancreatic cancer after using Byetta, Byudreon, Victoza, Januvia, Janumet or Tanzeum, please speak to us to learn more about your rights.

Also, case evaluations are free of cost and without obligation. Call us today at (877) 513-9517 or contact us online to speak with an attorney about your options. We may be able to get you the help you need.

Learn More

FDA Falsely Denied Pancreatic Cancer Risk in Diabetes Medications

Consumer Alert! Byetta Pancreatic Cancer Association

Byetta Linked to Cancer In Rat Studies

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