Januvia Attorney in Atlanta, Georgia
Januvia (Sitagliptin) is a medication that is manufactured by Merck Pharmaceuticals and is used to treat Type II Diabetes. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved this medication in 2006, and it became available for public use in April 2007.
Januvia is prescribed as a once-daily medication that can be taken with or without food. It can be taken alone or in conjunction with Metformin, a similar type of Type II diabetes medication. At the time of its release, Merck only reported the following possible side effects:
These symptoms, their medical pamphlet stated were usually only present for a short period after the medicine as ingested. It further stated that not all patients experienced these side effects.
New And Dangerous Side Effects Emerge In 2009
Januvia had not been on the market for a complete year when the FDA began experiencing a significant amount of adverse reaction notifications associated with this new drug. Patients who recently began taking Januvia were beginning to experience acute pancreatitis. In fact, by late 2008, eight people had died from the pancreatitis and several more had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Pancreatitis is described as swelling of the pancreas. It is very painful. In many cases the pain can be so severe that the patient is completely debilitated until the swelling subsides. Pancreatitis can usually be treated medically, but severe cases may cause death.
By 2009, the FDA was convinced that the new occurrences of pancreatitis in diabetes patients was connected to this type of medication and required Merck to include a warning on their medicine pamphlet about the increased risk of pancreatitis when using their medication.
More Alarming News Emerges In 2012
Researchers at many different colleges began to extensively research Januvia and its impact on the pancreas. What they discovered was alarming. Januvia did not cause the pancreas to swell or become inflamed as was necessary for pancreatitis to develop. Januvia actually caused the pancreas to start growing additional cells, not just swell. Even worse, the cells are mutated.
Additionally, these cells are shown to be more apt to develop into cancer. Pancreatic cancer is the most aggressive type of cancer known. Five year survival rates for this type of cancer are less than five percent.
Currently, the FDA is investigating is investigating all the information provided in these new studies and will issue a statement in the coming months about the future of Januvia.
Patients that are taking this medication and are experiencing any type of symptoms that may be relted to pancreatitis, such as nausea, swollen abdomen, or pain in the abdomen especially near the back, should seek immediate medical attention.
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