Lawsuits over type 2 diabetes drugs like Tradjenta have been growing in number year after year. These medications have been found to increase the risks of a number of serious health conditions from pancreatitis to cancer to lactic acidosis. Many people believe that they were not adequately warned about these risks before starting to take the medications to treat high blood sugar.
Medications like Tradjenta are fairly new and the evidence that they can cause harm is mounting and adding fuel to the lawsuits against the companies that make them. Accusations are being made that these companies failed to warn patients about risks, that they did not properly test the medications, and that they marketed the medications, representing them as safer, and more effective, than they are. If you suffered some of the harmful consequences of Tradjenta, you may be interested in presenting your case in court.
Type 2 Diabetes and Medication
One of the big issues with drugs like Tradjenta is that they have proliferated over the last decade as the number of people with type 2 diabetes has expanded. The drug companies rushed to get drugs to market that could treat this condition, have been marketing them relentlessly, and are raking in billions of dollars in sales. Some question whether the companies took the time to test these drugs adequately and if they have been marketed honestly, or if risks have been suppressed.
Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition characterized by high blood sugar levels. Because of a poor diet, lack of exercise, and being overweight or obese, a person with this condition has become insensitive to insulin or has stopped producing enough of it. Insulin is the hormone excreted by the pancreas that controls blood sugar levels. Medications for type 2 diabetes lower blood sugar and are supposed to be used along with changes in diet and exercise.
Tradjenta and DPP-4 Inhibitors
Tradjenta is the brand name of a drug called linagliptin. It was developed jointly between Eli Lilly and German drug maker Boehringer Ingelheim. Another drug called Jentadueto also contains linagliptin in combination with metformin, an older medication used to treat type 2 diabetes. Linagliptin belongs to the class of drugs called dipeptidyl peptidas-4 inhibitors, or DPP-4 inhibitors.
DPP-4 inhibitors work by blocking the DPP-4 enzyme. DPP-4 normally breaks down hormones that stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. By blocking it, linagliptin allows more insulin to be released and the result is lowered blood sugar levels.
There are several possible side effects of Tradjenta, although most people tolerate it well. It can cause upper respiratory and cold-like infections that congestion, a runny nose, coughing, and a sore throat. Some people may also experience joint pain, headaches, and diarrhea.
Tradjenta may cause more serious complications in some patients, which account for the lawsuits filed against type 2 diabetes drug makers like Eli Lilly and Boehringer Ingelheim. One of these serious side effects is pancreatitis, or inflammation of the pancreas. Most serious of all is the possibility of developing acute pancreatitis. This is a form of the illness that has a sudden onset and gets worse quickly. It can be life-threatening if not caught and treated quickly.
Pancreatitis can sometimes lead to pancreatic cancer, but there is also growing evidence that DPP-4 inhibitors like Tradjenta may directly increase the risk of developing this serious and aggressive type of cancer. Other DPP-4 inhibitors have been found to increase the risk by as much as two times as compared to people on other medications. The risk also increases as a patient takes the medication over a longer period of time.
The risk of pancreatic cancer is serious enough that the FDA issued a warning in 2013 about all DPP-4 inhibitors. The warning stated that evidence is very strong that these drugs can increase the risk of pancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. It also included facts from research that found pre-cancerous cells in the pancreases of some patients who had taken these medications. The FDA decided the evidence all together is not totally conclusive, but strong enough to warn patients and doctors to weigh the benefits of these drugs with the risks before using them.
Tradjenta is still a very new medication and as reports come in about adverse events and evidence from studies grows, experts believe that lawsuits will be filed over it. Similar drugs, including Januvia and Byetta have been on the market longer and have already been the subject of lawsuits because of complications like pancreatitis and cancer.
Januvia, like Tradjenta, is a DPP-4 inhibitor and it has been found to contribute to pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer, and thyroid cancer. It has also been the basis for lawsuits against maker Merck, including one in which a husband filed on behalf of his deceased wife. She died of pancreatic cancer after taking the DPP-4 inhibitor. Many more lawsuits like this one are being filed and tried and have been consolidated into large multidistrict litigation.
Filing a Tradjenta Lawsuit
Because other DPP-4 inhibitors and other types of type 2 diabetes drugs are the subjects of lawsuits, it stands to reason that Tradjenta won’t be far behind. The FDA issued the warning about pancreatitis and cancer, but not before many patients took the drug. There are still people relying on it for the management of blood sugar, and if these people are diagnosed in a year or two with cancer or pancreatitis, they may feel justified in suing Eli Lilly and Boehringer Ingelheim.
The lawsuits that are filed over DPP-4 inhibitors accuse the drug makers of selling a defective medication, of not testing medications properly, of failing to warn the public of all the risks, of misrepresenting a product as safe, and many other negligent behaviors. The plaintiffs in these cases believe that the drug companies engaged in various counts of wrongdoing and they hope to get punitive damages and compensation for their pain and suffering.
If you are among the many people struggling with type 2 diabetes, you may have felt relieved to know there were medications you could rely on to help you control your blood sugar. What you may not have realized is that these drugs can cause serious harm. You may have ended up with more medical expenses from extended medical care, and even lost income from being too sick to go to work. Filing a lawsuit against the maker of the drug that harmed you is a reasonable thing to do and could provide you with the money you need to cover these costs as well as your emotional and physical pain and suffering. With the help of a lawyer you can find out if a Tradjenta lawsuit is in your future.