Written by: Heather Helmendach, Legal Assistant
Law Offices of Thomas J. Lamb, P. A.
DPP-4 Diabetes Drugs
One of the popular classes of drugs for type 2 diabetes consists of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitors.
This DPP-4 inhibitors class comprises the following drugs:
- Kombiglyze XR
- Janumet (XR)
Based on various studies and patient reports, these drugs have been associated with the following side effects:
- Heart Failure
- Kidney Failure / Renal Failure
- Kidney Problems
- Decreased Renal Function
- Cerebral Infarction / CVA / Stroke
- Myocardial Infarction (MI) / Heart Attack
- Acute Pancreatitis
- Severe Joint
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
- Ulcerative Colitis
- Crohn's Disease
In my last article, I discussed the findings of a recent study conducted on three types of diabetes drugs: sodium-glucose cotransporter (SGLT-2) inhibitors, dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP-4) inhibitors, and incretin mimetics--also referred to as glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) agonists.
Researchers found that all three classes of drugs were effective in lowering blood sugar levels among type 2 diabetes patients. However, only two of the classes of diabetes drugs--SGLT-2 inhibitors and incretin mimetics--were shown to reduce the risk of death. Furthermore, DPP-4 inhibitors were no more effective at reducing the risk than a placebo or no treatment at all.
This finding is particularly alarming given that type 2 diabetes is associated with higher risk of death due to heart attacks or strokes.
In light of this information about the risks of DPP-4 diabetes drugs, one must wonder if other classes of type 2 diabetes drugs--which help reduce the risk of death--would be a better alternative. Otherwise put, taking DPP-4 diabetes drugs may not be worth the risks that accompany them.
In April 2016, the FDA issued a Drug Safety Communication that warned of the increased risk of heart failure in patients taking Onglyza, Kombiglyze XR, Nesina, Kazano, and Oseni.
Following that announcement, almost one hundred lawsuits were filed on behalf of patients taking Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR. These cases have been compiled in a multi-district litigation (MDL) in Kentucky and are currently pending.