Actos Update: Heightened Canadian Warnings


Canada Makes Move on Actos

Actos is a type-2 diabetes drug with an astonishing relationship to bladder cancer. Some studies suggest that Actos users are 22% more likely to develop bladder cancer. There are also claims that the drug may cause heart failure. The drug even carries a black box warning—the highest level of warning imposed by the FDA. The Japanese manufacturer, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, is up against more than 196 federal Actos lawsuits. Bloomberg estimates that the company may face 10,000 lawsuits in the U.S. alone.

Actos recalls have been in effect in Germany and France. Now, Health Canada (Canada’s equivalent to the FDA) is one step closer to an Actos recall: it now requires a warning about the bladder cancer risk. That decision was issued on April 19, 2012, only halfway through Takeda’s ten-year study of the drug. Initial data from the study shows that using Actos for over a year increases the risks of developing bladder cancer.

The University of Toronto’s head of clinical pharmacology, Dr. David Juulink, commented about the Actos dangers:

I personally would not be comfortable using it as a long-term therapy because bladder cancer is … not something that’s reversible. It’s not a skin rash that goes away when you stop the drug. We’ve got other options. And when you’ve got other options why would you take an option that has some well-established side-effects and some side-effects that are less well established but ones that you would for sure rather avoid?

Federal lawsuits have been combined into a type of Actos class action called multidistrict litigation (MDL-2299). This means that any Actos case filed in a federal courthouse anywhere in the United States is sent to one judge in Louisiana. Some state courts, like California and Illinois, have also set up similar groups of Actos lawsuits. The lawsuits are combined for the purposes of discovery and hopefully, eventual settlement.

If you have used Actos and have had heart failure, bladder cancer or the symptoms of bladder cancer, including painful urination or blood in the urine, contact our Actos injury lawyers at 800.553.8082, or online for a free consultation. There is no cost to you to investigate or bring a lawsuit. If successful, Takeda may be responsible to pay all of your medical bills.

• Actos bladder cases lawsuits consolidated into a class action (sort of)