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Study Confirms Byetta, Januvia Pancreatic Cancer Link

Written by Berkowitz

A recent Italian study confirms the much-discussed link between incretin mimetic diabetes drugs such as Byetta, Januvia, and Victoza, and pancreatic cancer.

The study, published in early November in Expert Opinion on Drug Safety by a team of researchers out of Ferrara, Italy, comes amidst mounting personal injury lawsuits brought by diabetes patients who have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after using medications belonging to this class.

The researchers evaluated 1,169 drug reaction reports surrounding incretin mimetics, finding 90 cases of pancreatitis and heightened pancreatic enzymes. More than one-third of these were serious cases; chronic pancreatitis may be a precursor to deadly pancreatic cancer.

“Our data from the daily clinical practice add up and confirm the information available on the association between incretin-mimetics and pancreatic damage and suggest caution in the prescribing of these new drugs and a close monitoring of exposed patients,” said the researchers.

This is not the first study to link pancreatic cancer to these relatively new diabetes drugs. In February, Johns Hopkins researchers in Baltimore found that patients who use Januvia or Byetta could face double the risk of hospitalization for pancreatitis. The information was published in the journal Diabetes. A study published in the same journal in March showed a higher rate of pancreatic masses and precancerous cells in patients using incretin mimetics.

Patients and families of patients with pancreatic cancer that took Januvia, Byetta, or Victoza have filed personal injury lawsuits in pursuit of compensation for medical expenses and other damages. Multidistrict litigation (MDL) for all federal diabetes drug pancreatic cancer lawsuits was established in August.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after using a diabetes drug in the same class as Byetta, Januvia, or Victoza, you could be entitled to compensation. For more information, please contact a personal injury lawyer at Berkowitz and Hanna LLC to schedule a free legal consultation.