There is a growing amount of risk information linking Byetta (exenatide), a popular type-2 diabetes drug, to an increased risk of cancer — especially pancreatic cancer and thyroid cancer. No causal link has been established between Byetta and cancer. However, a recent study found that hundreds of people developed cancer while using Byetta.
Do I Have a Texas Byetta Lawsuit? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you or a loved one was injured by Byetta, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a Byetta lawsuit in Texas.
Byetta and Cancer
Byetta (exenatide) is an anti-diabetes medication that mimics the effect of a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). Byetta and other GLP-1 drugs (Victoza, Januvia, etc.) have been linked to potential increased risks of pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas), which is a risk factor for developing pancreatic cancer. Byetta has also been linked to a possible increased risk of thyroid cancer, but this association is weaker. Researchers are still investigating the link between Byetta and cancer.
Does Byetta Increase the Risk of Cancer?
More than 7 million prescriptions have been written for Byetta. In 2011, researchers from UCLA published a study in the journal Gastroenterology that identified 375 cases of any type of Byetta cancer, including more than 100 cases of pancreatic cancer or thyroid cancer. These cases were submitted to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) voluntary adverse event reporting system, MedWatch, between 2004 and 2009.
The researchers found the following Byetta cancer risks:
- Pancreatitis: 971 cases, 6-fold increased risk
- Pancreatic cancer: 81 cases, 2.9-fold increased risk.
- Thyroid cancer: 30 cases, 4.7-fold increased risk.
Soon after that study was published, drug-makers Amylin Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly & Co. convinced the journal’s editors to retract the study to avoid sparking an “unnecessary health scare.” The lead researchers who conducted the study cautioned that case reports alone do not prove that Byetta was responsible for the cancer, and voluntary reporting of side effects is higher for new drugs like Byetta. However, a large number of reports may indicate an unanticipated side effect that needs to be investigated further.
FDA and Byetta Cancer Risk
The FDA has requested that the manufacturers of Byetta conduct studies to investigate the risk of pancreatic cancer and thyroid cancer. Concern about the link between Byetta and cancer has been growing for many years. In November 2009, the FDA warned about pancreatitis. They also requested that Amylin and Eli Lilly conduct six post-marketing surveillance studies to investigate the risk of Byetta cancer (specifically, thyroid cancer and pancreatic cancer).
Do I have a Byetta Lawsuit in Texas?
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