Earlier this month, despite numerous lawsuits against Takeda Pharmaceuticals Actos, the FDA approved pioglitazone – the generic name for Actos – for market in the United States. Now, watchdog group Consumer Reports says the “bargain” should be avoided.
For one thing, Consumer Reports points out, the generic version will not currently save patients with Type 2 diabetes any money. As only three manufacturers are currently supplying pioglitazone, the cost is roughly the same as name-brand Actos – around $377 for a prescription.
More importantly, the side effects of the drug are not worthwhile, unless nothing else has worked to control Type 2 diabetes. Actos has been strongly linked to an increased risk of bladder cancer, as well as some increased risk of diabetic macular edema. Both Actos and another Type 2 diabetes drug, Avandia, have been linked to increased risk of heart disease and liver failure. In fact, Actos was seen as so dangerous that France and Germany both banned the drug last summer.
Many studies are coming out supporting other methods of treating Type 2 diabetes, including, surprisingly, bariatric surgery. Consumer Reports recommended a drug that studies have shown to be much safer –metformin.
The generic version of Actos comes with legal risks, as well. In June 2011, the case Pilva v. Mensing ruled that generic drug manufacturers could not be blamed for a plaintiff’s injuries, as long as their label matched the name-brand warning label. This ruling essentially gives generic drug manufacturers less responsibility for patients’ health. In May of this year, Congressional Democrats introduced legislation to overturn the ruling, to protect patients’ legal rights to hold manufacturers responsible for their products’ safety. However, the bill has not yet been passed.
While name-brand Actos currently comes with the strongest possible warning label, it is still being sold in the US, shortly to be joined by generic versions of the drug. It is important to know the risks of potential drugs, so patients should speak candidly with their doctors about options for controlling or preventing Type 2 diabetes.
If you or a loved one has Type 2 diabetes, have taken Actos to treat your condition, and have since developed bladder cancer, heart disease, liver failure, or diabetic macular edema, you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced personal injury lawyers at Strom Law, LLC, are now accepting cases against Takeda Pharmaceuticals nationwide. We offer free consultations to help get you on the path to recovery, so contact us today. 803.252.4800.