Bullous pemphigoid is a painful skin disease with blisters. It is a rare side effect of Januvia and other diabetes drugs in the DPP-4 inhibitor class.
Need a Texas Bullous Pemphigoid Lawyer? 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 diagnosed with pemphigus or pemphigoid, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit.
Blistering Skin Condition Linked to DPP-4 Diabetes Drugs
Dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors, also known as “gliptins,” are a new class of type-2 diabetes drugs that have been sold since 2006. In December 2016, the FDA ordered drug-makers to update warning labels to include bullous pemphigoid after several people were hospitalized with this devastating and potentially deadly skin reaction.
DPP-4 Diabetes Drugs (Gliptins)
- Januvia (sitagliptin)
- Janumet (sitagliptin / metformin)
- Janumet XR (sitagliptin / metformin extended-release)
- Onglyza (saxagliptin)
- Kombiglyze XR (saxagliptin / metformin extended-release)
- Tradjenta (linagliptin)
- Glyxambi (linagliptin / empagliflozin)
- Jentadueto (linagliptin / metformin)
- Nesina (alogliptin)
- Kazano (alogliptin / metformin)
- Oseni (alogliptin / pioglitazone)
Studies Linking DPP-4 Diabetes Drugs and Bullous Pemphigoid
Two case reports linking DPP-4 diabetes drugs and bullous pemphigoid were published in 2011. In 2012, five more cases were reported in patients on metformin and a DPP-4. In 2014, doctors reported a 70 year-old man who took Januvia (50-mg/day) for 1 year before he developed bullous pemphigoid.
In France, 42 cases of bullous pemphigoid were reported in patients on DPP-4 inhibitors between 2008 and 2014. Researchers estimated a 67-fold increased risk of bullous pemphigoid. Tradjenta (linagliptin) was linked to two cases of bullous pemphigoid with blisters and lesions. The patients were on Tradjenta for 2-4 months. The study was published in JAMA Dermatology in February 2016.
What is Bullous Pemphigoid?
Bullous pemphigoid is a rare skin reaction characterized by large blisters. The blisters are usually located on the arms, legs, abdomen, or sometimes mucous membranes (eyes, nose, mouth, genitals). The blisters can burst open and create ulcers, lesions, or open sores that become infected or cause scarring.
What Causes Bullous Pemphigoid?
Diabetes drugs in the DPP-4 inhibitor class can cause bullous pemphigoid after 2-13 months of treatment or longer. It is caused by the immune system mistakenly producing antibodies that attack fibers between the epidermis (top layer of skin) and dermis (deeper skin).
Symptoms of Bullous Pemphigoid
The symptoms of bullous pemphigoid start with a painful rash followed by blisters, itching, or hives. The blisters are large, filled with clear fluid or blood, and do not pop very easily. Blisters that do pop may become very painful. The skin around the blister may look normal or slightly red. Pictures of Bullous Pemphigoid [GRAPHIC]
Complications of Bullous Pemphigoid
- Sepsis (blood poisoning)
- Hoarseness, loss of voice, trouble swallowing
Diagnosis of Bullous Pemphigoid
Diagnosis of bullous pemphigoid usually requires a skin biopsy (tissue sample) that is examined under a microscope. Patients may also need a blood test. Bullous pemphigoid it is sometimes misdiagnosed as, pemphigus, bullosis diabeticorum, diabetic bullae, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS), Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TEN), Erythema Multiforme, or Eczema.
Treatment for Bullous Pemphigoid
Patients will need to stop taking their DPP-4 diabetes drug and start taking a topical or systemic immunosuppressive medication. Patients must be extremely careful to avoid rupturing the blisters. They may also need painkillers or anti-inflammatory corticosteroid medications.
Need a Pemphigoid Lawyer in Texas?
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