Diabetes Drugs May Lead to Pancreatitis & Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatitis occurs when the pancreas (a large gland near the stomach) becomes inflamed. According to the FDA, some diabetes medications may lead to pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer in patients. Pancreatitis can be mild, severe, or deadly. Many times, acute pancreatitis leads to chronic pancreatitis, an ongoing medical condition. Several days ago, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a safety communication indicating that a group of academic researchers may have discovered a link between type 2 diabetes medications and pancreatic medical conditions – primarily inflammation of the pancreas and pancreatic duct metaplasia. Pancreatic duct metaplasia is a pre-cancerous cellular change in the tissue of the pancreas.

Although the FDA has not arrived at any independent conclusions about the medications, the safety communication said that the following incretin mimetic drugs may lead to pancreatic cancer and pancreatitis:

  • Byetta
  • Bydureon
  • Victoza
  • Januvia
  • Janumet
  • Juvisync
  • Janumet XR

These drugs (incretin mimetic class) effectively treat type 2 diabetes by mimicking the hormone incretin. Generally speaking, incretin hormones increase the amount of insulin the human body by releasing it from beta cells. This type of medication is used with proper exercise and diet to maintain healthy blood sugar levels in diabetic adults.

Although the FDA has not deemed incretin mimetic diabetic medications dangerous, patients are supposed to speak with their health care professionals to make sure that the drug isn’t causing any adverse side effects. Additionally, the FDA warned healthcare providers and patients that the drugs Januvia and Janumet were associated with reports of pancreatitis. Another alert from the FDA said that Byetta was also associated with reports of pancreatitis. If you or a loved one suffered serious side effects because of a type 2 diabetes medication, contact The Senators Firm today. You may be entitled to compensation through a personal injury claim or lawsuit.