A Minnesota man has filed a lawsuit against Takeda Pharmaceuticals and Eli Lilly and Company for injuries he allegedly received as a result of taking the diabetes drug Actos (pioglitazone).
The plaintiff, one of the latest to join the Actos litigation consolidated in federal court in Lafayette, Louisiana, claims the type 2 diabetes drug caused him to develop bladder cancer. He seeks damages for permanent injuries, severe mental and physical pain and suffering, and economic losses related to his medical expenses and the costs of maintaining a change in lifestyle brought about by his injuries.
Like many plaintiffs who allege the popular diabetes drug caused them to develop bladder cancer, the Minnesota plaintiff claims that Takeda and Eli Lilly misrepresented and omitted information it held about Actos and “actively concealed its risks. The lawsuit also claims that he was not adequately warned about Actos’ risks and that he could have taken several safer alternative drugs had he known about the health risks posed by Actos.
Actos quickly became one of the top-selling drugs in the United States after it received U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in July 1999. However, in June 2011, the FDA warned that patients taking Actos for one year or longer were exposed to a risk of bladder cancer 40 percent higher than those who hadn’t taken the drug and ordered Takeda to include a warning about the increased risk of bladder cancer on the drug’s labeling.
A number of other studies echoed these findings. Most recently, a Canadian study led by Montreal epidemiologist Dr. Laurent Azoulay and published online in the British Medical Journal found that patients who take Actos two years or longer are twice as likely to develop bladder cancer than those who have never used the drug. The study analyzed the medical records of nearly 116,000 patients in the U.K.
All Actos lawsuits filed in federal courts have been consolidated for pre-trial proceedings under Judge Rebecca Doherty in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana.