Byetta (exenatide) has been linked to a four-fold increased risk of thyroid cancer compared to other diabetes drugs. Cancer treatment can be extraordinarily expensive, debilitating, and frightening. Certain types of thyroid cancer can even cause life-threatening complications. If you were unaware of the risk of Byetta thyroid cancer, you are not alone.
Do I Have a 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 after taking Byetta, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit
Byetta (exenatide) is a Type-2 diabetes medication developed by Amylin Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly & Co. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Byetta in 2005, and it is intended to be used along with diet and exercise. It contains a compound that was developed from a chemical found in the poisonous saliva of the Gila monster, a type of lizard found in the Southwestern U.S.
Byetta is a twice-daily injection drug that is a synthetic mimic of the hormone GLP-1. This hormone stimulates the pancreas to secrete insulin, which tells cells to absorb extra glucose (sugar) from the bloodstream. People who have Type-2 diabetes are resistant to their own insulin, which causes chronic high blood-sugar. Byetta treats this by stimulating the pancreas to produce even more insulin, which causes cells to absorb more blood-sugar, which then reduces blood-sugar levels.
Does Byetta Cause Thyroid Cancer?
No one knows if Byetta causes thyroid cancer, and cancer researchers are still investigating all potential causes of thyroid cancer. Although Byetta has been linked to an increased risk of thyroid cancer, more research needs to be conducted. Thyroid cancer is very rare, and studies are most statistically significant when they involve thousands of people over many years. Byetta is a relatively new drug, so there is very little long-term safety data.
Furthermore, there is growing concern about the safety of type-2 diabetes drugs that influence GLP-1. These types of medications may increase the risk of certain cancers, including thyroid cancer. In addition to Byetta, another type-2 diabetes drug that influences GLP-1 is Victoza (liraglutide). Rodent studies of Victoza have shown that the drug increases proliferation of pre-cancerous thyroid C-cells, but it is unknown whether this translates to an increased risk in humans.
Studies Linking Byetta to Thyroid Cancer
One study linking Byetta to thyroid cancer was published in the journal Gastroenterology in 2011. The researchers who conducted the study looked at the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System (AERS) from 2004 through 2009. They analyzed the rate of thyroid cancer associated with Byetta, and compared this rate to other diabetes drugs. The researchers found that Byetta was associated with a 4.7-fold increased risk of thyroid cancer compared to other diabetes drugs.
More studies must be conducted to better understand the link between Byetta and thyroid cancer. However, because Byetta is a relatively new drug, the fact that researchers already have enough data to link Byetta to thyroid cancer is a warning sign that warrants further investigation.
Furthermore, there are several different subgroups of thyroid cancer. The FDA’s reporting system does not differentiate between these subgroups, and therefore, the researchers were unable to determine what type of thyroid cancer was associated with Byetta.
What is Thyroid Cancer?
Thyroid cancer occurs when cells start dividing uncontrollably in the thyroid, which is a gland in the endocrine system. The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located on the front and center of the neck, near the collarbone.
Some subgroups of thyroid cancer include:
- Anaplastic carcinoma
- Follicular carcinoma
- Medullary carcinoma
- Papillary carcinoma
These types of cancers vary widely in severity and prognosis, but long-term prognosis is best with early treatment. Most people who are diagnosed with thyroid cancer will require surgery to remove their thyroid gland, and they must take a supplement drug for the rest of their life to replace thyroid hormones. If thyroid cancer progresses further, radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy may be necessary. Thyroid cancer can be fatal if it spreads to other organ systems.
If you suffered from thyroid cancer after using Byetta, you are likely seeking justice and compensation for your injury. If you decide to file a Byetta lawsuit, you may be compensated for your pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost income, decreased quality of life, and more.
Symptoms of Thyroid Cancer
Thyroid cancer may or may not produce symptoms in its early stages. If symptoms do appear, they may include:
- Throat pain
- Lump or nodule on the throat
- Enlarged lymph nodes
- Problems swallowing or breathing
- Changes in voice (hoarseness)
- Chronic cough
- And more
Do I have a Byetta Thyroid Cancer Lawsuit?
Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged.
Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more than 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $60 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact us for a free Byetta thyroid cancer lawsuit review.