Diabetes Drug Could Increase Risk of Bladder Cancer

Mon, 23 Apr 2012
The diabetes drug Actos could increase a person's risk of developing bladder cancer. Health Canada and the drug manufacturer, Takeda Canada Inc., stated.

This announcement was issued two days after the U.S. Food and Drug administration issued a similar warning.

Health Canada stated that the drug's labelling will be altered to reflect the possible risk.

Actos is the brand name for pioglitazone used for treatment of Type 2 diabetes . Its sister drug is Avandia, once upon a time a widely used diabetes drug which lost favour after research discovered it increased its users likelihood of developing heart disease .

A ten year old study into the effects of this drug indicate it does increase the risk of heart disease.

Presently in Ontario Actos is not on the list of drugs that doctors freely prescribe; it has been placed in the "exceptional access" list which means that it needs approval to be prescribed.

Dr. David Juurlink, head of the division of clinical pharmacology at the University of Toronto, stated that currently there is minimal need to take this this drug, unless a patient on it has fared extremely well on it in the past.

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