Januvia Sales Slow after Links to Cancer
Merck & Company, manufacturer of Januvia, has reported a drop in quarterly sales. The company’s first quarter statement showed sales of Januvia fell by four percent to $884 million. This is compared to an increase in sales of approximately fifteen percent in the previous quarter. Many legal experts believe that this decrease in sales is related to recent concerns about Januvia’s side effects. Approved in 2006, Januvia is one of Merck’s bestselling drugs. It is a type II diabetes medication in a class of drugs called incretin mimetics. Incretin mimetics mimic the action of incretin hormones found in the gastrointestinal tract that stimulate the release of insulin after a person consumes a meal. Some research, however, suggests a link between the development of pancreatic cancer and the use of these types of incretin mimetics. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced recently that it was examining data that suggests a link between Januvia use and pancreatic cancer and an increased risk of pancreatitis. The concern about Januvia and other incretin mimetic drugs is disputed. In the May 6, 2013 issue ofDiabetes Care, a point-counterpoint set of articles was published, discussing both sides of the debate. Some experts, such as Michael Nauck, MD, argue that the benefits of incretin mimetics outweigh the risks. “Obviously more needs to be learned regarding the open questions, but based on today’s available knowledge, incretin-based medications can be considered effective and safe.” However, Peter Butler, MD, argues against the use of incretin mimetics, saying, “A new class of anti-diabetic agents is rushed to market and widely promoted in the absence of any evidence of long-term beneficial outcomes. Evidence of harm accumulates, but it is vigorously discounted.” Now, a wrongful death lawsuit has been filed by the family of a women who died of pancreatic cancer after using a combination of incretin mimetic drugs, including Januvia. The lawsuit alleges that the drug manufacturers did not adequately warn patients of the risks associated with these medications. So far, fifty-five Januvia lawsuits have already been filed across the United States and more are expected. Plaintiffs have requested that the lawsuits be consolidated into a multidistrict litigation (MDL). A decision on the request for an MDL is expected this month. Patients who have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after using the diabetic Januvia may be able to file a lawsuit. To learn more about your rights and legal options, call the Phillips Law Firm today. Our experienced Januvia lawsuit lawyers have represented families across the country in their quest for justice. For a free consultation visit the Phillips Law Firm website http://www.justiceforyou.com or call 1-800-708-6000.