Many people with type 2 diabetes take prescription medications to manage their condition and the health problems it creates. However, many type 2 diabetes patients taking the drug Onglyza have suffered serious, life-threatening side effects, including heart failure and pancreatitis. If this has happened to you or a loved one, our Portland drug injury lawyers may be able to file an Onglyza lawsuit to recover compensation for the damages that have occurred. We understand how devastating medication injuries can be and are committed to holding negligent drug manufacturers accountable for putting your long-term health in danger.
Your consultation with our trusted attorneys is free, and there is no obligation to take legal action. If you have a case and you want to pursue it, you will not be charged for our services unless you receive compensation.
Onglyza Side Effects
Research and FDA warnings have revealed that Onglyza is linked to dangerous side effects, including an increased risk of heart failure, pancreatic cancer and pancreatitis.
If you are taking this drug, you should watch for any symptoms of these conditions and seek medical treatment right away if you notice any of them.
Heart Failure Symptoms
While Onglyza may increase the risk of this condition, the danger could be even greater if you already have cardiovascular problems or damage to your liver. If you are already having these problems, watch for symptoms of heart failure, which could include:
- Fatigue that is unusual
- Gaining weight
- Struggling to breathe, particularly when you are lying down
- Swelling in your legs
- Feeling nauseous or lacking an appetite
- Swelling in your abdomen
- Not being able to exercise as much as you used to
- Rapid heartbeat
- Irregular heartbeat
- Bulging veins in your neck
- Persistent cough that is not part of another condition
- Shortness of breath that is unusual
Signs of Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer
The pancreas is part of your digestive system and it produces insulin and other enzymes to break down food as it passes through your system. One of its most important functions is secreting insulin into the bloodstream to regulate the body's glucose, or sugar levels. Regulating glucose levels is particularly important for type 2 diabetes patients because these levels are high.
The medication Onglyza interacts with the pancreas, helping to increase insulin levels to remove glucose from the blood. However, the drug has been linked to a higher risk of pancreatitis, which is inflammation of this organ. This is a severe health problem that can be life-threatening in some situations.
Watch for the following common symptoms of pancreatitis and get medical help if you experience any of them:
- Feeling nauseous
- Your abdomen being tender to the touch
- Rapid heartrate
- Pain in your upper abdomen that you can feel in your back
- Throwing up
- Pain in abdomen getting worse after you eat
- Losing weight, even though your eating habits have not changed
Onglyza has also been linked to an increased risk of developing cancerous tumors in the pancreas. Symptoms of pancreatic cancer to watch for include:
- Greasy stool
- Pale or gray stool
- Itchy skin
- Dark-colored urine
- Pain in your abdomen
- Poor appetite
- Weight loss
- Feeling nauseous
If you are experiencing these types of side effects and you have been taking Onglyza, you may have grounds for an Onglyza lawsuit. Contact an attorney from Rizk Law today for a free legal consultation.
Call us today at 503.245.5677.
Lawsuits Over Onglyza Side Effects
Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. These lawsuits allege Onglyza caused them or their deceased loved one to suffer congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction (heart attack) or cardiovascular injury. These cases also claim Onglyza manufacturers:
- Did not provide adequate warning about the risk of congestive heart failure
- Continued to sell and market the drug even though they were aware of the risk of severe side effects
- Did not adequately discuss the risks of the drug in print and online advertising
- Did not fully study the question of Onglyza increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Continued to say this medication was safe and effective for treating type 2 diabetes
In February 2018, victims filed a request to centralize dozens of cases by creating a multidistrict litigation (MDL). Before this, there were a total of 84 actions pending in more than 30 districts.
The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML), which reviews requests to create MDLs, chose to create an MDL for the pending lawsuits over Onglyza side effects and sent these cases to the Eastern District of Kentucky. As of December 2018, the number of pending lawsuits in the Onglyza MDL (MDL-2809) had increased to 225.
MDLs are created when a group of lawsuits has common issues of fact, like a drug being linked to certain side effects or consumers suffering a certain type of injury. By centralizing cases, it helps to speed up the legal process. A few cases will be chosen for bellwether trials. The outcomes of these cases give attorneys for both sides an idea of how the rest of the lawsuits are likely to turn out. If the victims are able to recover compensation, the other side may decide to propose a settlement for the rest of the cases.
Contact us today at 503.245.5677 to find out if you can file an Onglyza lawsuit or join the MDL.
History of Onglyza
Onglyza came onto the market in 2009 after it was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The medication has become widely used – AstraZeneca reported more than $600 million in sales in the 2017 fiscal year.
The medication's active ingredient is saxagliptin, a dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP-4) inhibitor. This substance promotes an increase in a hormone that makes the pancreas increase insulin production. This helps to take glucose out of the blood, which helps people with type 2 diabetes because they have high blood sugar.
One of the advantages of Onglyza is that it helps patients control spikes in blood sugar that often occur in the morning and after eating. These spikes could be very dangerous.
However, research has come out in the past several years highlighting the dangers of this medication. For example, in October 2013, there was a study in the New England Journal of Medicine that revealed a 27 percent increase in the risk of hospitalization for heart failure for patients who took saxagliptin, which is the active ingredient in Onglyza. The study consisted of 16,492 patients.
Less than three years later, in the spring of 2016, the FDA ordered manufacturers to include stronger warnings about the higher risk of heart failure with Onglyza. The announcement of the stronger warning told patients to talk to their doctor if they noticed symptoms of heart failure.
Research on Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer
Just two years after Onglyza was approved and came on the market, manufacturers updated prescribing information for Kombiglyze XR to notify patients that the medication could increase the risk of pancreatitis. Kombiglyze is a medication similar to Onglyza that is used to treat patients with type 2 diabetes.
The American Diabetes Association released a study in 2013 that found incretin therapies gave patients a higher risk of developing pancreatic cancer. Onglyza is a type of incretin therapy because it elevates the amount of incretin hormones in the body.
In 2015, The Journal of Environmental Science and Health published an analysis of several studies. Researchers concluded that there was a higher risk of pancreatic and thyroid cancer in patients taking DPP-4 inhibitors, like Onglyza. The study said evidence demonstrated the need to continuously monitor patients undergoing incretin therapies.
Our dangerous drug attorneys can review your situation to determine if you have a viable case for the injuries you suffered from taking Onglyza. There is no risk to you because meeting with us is free and comes with no obligation to take legal action.
Contact Our Attorneys About an Onglyza Lawsuit
Prescription medications can have amazing benefits for many people. Unfortunately, there are also risks of side effects. If the side effects are particularly dangerous, and the manufacturer did not provide adequate warning about these things, you may have the right to take legal action to recover compensation for medical expenses and other damages.
If you took Onglyza and suffered heart failure, or lost a loved one to this condition, you may have the right to take legal action. Contact our experienced lawyers today to review your situation. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can go to work for you.
Your consultation is free and comes with no obligation. We also do not charge legal fees unless you receive compensation.
Call Rizk Law today to discuss your options. 503.245.5677.