Actos (pioglitazone) is a medication prescribed for patients with Type II diabetes. Actos is made to help the body process insulin more efficiently and regulate sugar levels in the blood. Pioglitazone is in a class of drugs called thiazolidinediones, which increase the body's response to insulin.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's 10-year study of Actos revealed some shocking results. A 2010 interim analysis of the study data confirmed that pioglitazone can cause a higher incidence of bladder cancer in patients who take it. These results led the FDA to issue an Actos safety warning in June of 2011. The safety announcement warned healthcare professionals not to prescribe Actos to patients who already have bladder cancer or who have a history of it. The FDA reiterated this announcement in 2014.
Other countries, such as France and Germany, decided to take more drastic measures. German doctors are no longer prescribing Actos for new patients, and French officials have banned the drug altogether.
Besides bladder cancer, data shows that patients who take pioglitazone are at an increased risk for a number of other negative and potentially serious side effects, including, but not limited to:
At Metzger Wickersham, we urge patients to understand the risks of the medications they're taking. If you've taken Actos and been diagnosed with bladder cancer or experienced other adverse side effects, contact our Pennsylvania drug injury lawyers today for a free, no obligation consultation.