Onglyza Diabetes Medication And The Dangers of Pancreatic Cancer
- Have you or a loved one ever used Onglyza to treat type 2 diabetes?
- Were you later diagnosed with pancreatic cancer?
- If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
- Recent studies have indicated Onglyza may increase the risk of developing pancreatic cancer, meaning you may have a valid legal claim against the manufacturers of the drug.
What Is Onglyza Diabetes Medication?
Onglyza was first approved in 2009 to control blood sugar levels in patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
- The drug was a joint venture for drug makers AstraZeneca and Bristol-Meyers Squibb.
- By 2011, the popular drug had reached $700 million in sales, largely due to the fact the oral drug, unlike other diabetes medications, does not include weight gain as a side effect.
- However, Onglyza has been linked to other potentially life-threatening conditions such as pancreatic cancer.
How Does Onglyza Work?
Onglyza (saxaglipton), is an oral medication used to treat type 2 diabetes by regulating blood sugar levels.
Onglyza (saxaglipton) Is Classified As An Incretin Mimetic
This can lead to elevated blood glucose (blood sugar) levels and cause health problems.
Incretins are a collection of metabolic hormones, known as GLP-1. They boost the amount of insulin released after food is introduced to the body. This can diminish blood glucose levels (blood sugar).
Incretins normally reproduce through the pancreas. The pancreas is a large gland behind the stomach responsible for secreting insulin and glucagon into the blood. But Onglyza can mimic or imitate the incretin hormones that the body usually produces on its own.
Dangers Associated With Onglyza Include Pancreatic Cancer
Onglyza’s primary function is to act on the pancreas to decrease blood glucose levels.
Unfortunately, the medication has been linked to pancreatitis, better known as inflammation of the pancreas. This particular condition typically has few symptoms, leaving patients who suffer from it often unaware they even have it. However, left untreated, pancreatitis has the potential to increase the risk of pancreatic cancer.
Pancreatitis Is An Extremely Serious Diagnosis Requiring Attention
Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. Pancreatitis can lead to major bodily harm, including pancreatic cancer.
It is important to seek medical attention if you notice any symptoms of pancreatitis:
- Pain in the upper abdomen
- Rapid pulse
- Pain from abdomen that spreads to back
- Pain in the abdomen made worse after eating
- Abdomen that is tender to the touch
- Unexplained weight loss
- Oily, malodorous stools
Symptoms of Pancreatic Cancer
Pancreatic cancer can be difficult to detect, largely due to its lack of symptoms in its early stages.
However, pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest forms of cancer.
Once symptoms do begin to emerge, the cancer has often progressed to other parts of the body, therefore becoming much harder to cure. Oftentimes, surgery alone is no longer effective in ridding the body of the illness, requiring many patients to undergo additional, life-altering methods of treatment.
That’s why it is extremely important to know the signs and symptoms of both pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer.
If you have any of the following symptoms, immediately contact a healthcare professional:
- Sudden onset of diabetes
- Skin or eyes that appear yellow in color (referred to as jaundice)
- Loss of appetite
- Itchy skin, particularly of the palms and feet
- Enlarged gall bladder
- Severe pain in the abdomen
- Changes in taste
- Black, tar-like stool
- Pale, malodorous stools that float
- Unexplained weight loss that happens suddenly
- Worsening of type 2 diabetes symptoms
- Dark-colored urine
Many of these symptoms are similar to those of pancreatitis. But many symptoms only become concrete after the disease has already spread to other parts of the body.
Do not wait to seek medical attention if you are having these symptoms.
Other Complications From Pancreatitis
Aside from pancreatic cancer, pancreatitis can cause serious and severe complications if left untreated. Treatment may include fasting, intravenous fluids, pain medications and in more advanced cases, surgery.
The Dangers of Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer Posed By Onglyza Are Real
Diabetes Medical Journal Study Of Incretin Mimetics And Pancreatitis
In a 2013 study published by the medical journal Diabetes, researchers studied the pancreases of diabetic patients who had taken incretin mimetic drugs to control their conditions but later died in the absence of any discernible cause.
The study found that the majority of these organs contained an excess of pre-cancerous growths as well as a disproportionate growth of cells.
The researchers warned that incretin mimetic drugs might lead to the conditions for developing pre-cancerous tumors in the pancreas.
Such tumors could end up requiring invasive surgery. Even worse, when uncontrolled cell growth occurs in the pancreas, the result is pancreatic cancer.
Food And Drug Administration Issues Warning On Onglyza
In response to research connecting incretin mimetics like Onglyza to the risk of pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a “safety communication” regarding Onglyza and other incretin mimetics.
The FDA is investigating studies related to these types of medications and their specific links to cancer. They previously warned manufacturers of this class of drugs to carefully review these possible connections in 2009, though no information regarding any probable correlation was ever made public.
If you or a loved one took Onglyza for type 2 diabetes and have experienced any of the symptoms listed above, or have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and treatment.
But you need experienced attorneys on your side.
An Austin Personal Injury Law Firm That Knows What You’re Up Against
Onglyza Injury Lawsuits Can Be Very Complex to Prove
Winning a mass tort lawsuit for injuries caused by dangerous pharmaceuticals usually involves proving that the manufacturers did not properly warn people taking it of the potential risks.
That can include investigating medical studies, corporate publications and using testimony from experts on how the medication caused an injury. This is not easily done, particularly when drug companies show up with an army of lawyers.
But battling bullies is what Justinian & Associates does.
We Are Warriors For The Injured
The legal team at Justinian and Associates has years of experience dealing with cases like Onglyza.
We have the knowledge, experience, resources and trained investigators to take on large adversaries like billion dollar pharmaceutical companies.
All we do is fight for injured victims. Our only goal is justice for our clients, whatever that means for them. And we do not accept defeat. Unless we get you money for your injuries, you don’t pay us a dime.
The Time to Act is Now
Your rights can be lost if you wait.
There are laws that limit how much time you have to file a lawsuit after being injured. They are known as statutes of limitation. They may apply to your lawsuit to recover for your Onglyza injuries. The countdown may already have begun.
The statute of limitations (how long you have to file a case) may already be counting down. Don’t let it expire!
Call, text or email us for a free consultation, with no obligation. Speak to an Austin personal injury attorney from Justinian & Associates (not a “screener” or paralegal) to understand your rights.