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Duetact Diabetes Drug Linked to Bladder Cancer

Posted in Duetact

A 2011 repot has shown that use of diabetes drug Duetact® (glimepiride and pioglitazone), manufactured by Takeda Pharmaceuticals is associated with a dramatically-increased risk of bladder cancer.  Duetact®, a drug that works by increasing the body’s sensitivity to insulin, contains two chemicals proven to be carcinogenic: sulfonylurea and pioglitazone.  Sulfonylurea has been previously linked to an increased risk for bladder cancer, while the present report by Dr. Carlo Piccinni et al further links pioglitazone to that same risk.[1]

By reviewing adverse events reported to the United States Food and Drug Administration between 2004 and 2009, the Piccinni team found “ninety-three reports of bladder cancer … corresponding to 138 drug-reaction pairs”[2] concerning a range of diabetes drugs.  Of the 138 instances of bladder cancer reported between 2004 and 2009 associated with the use of diabetes drugs, 31 were found to be in relation to the use of pioglitazone.

Further statistical analysis by the Piccinni team demonstrated that the risk for bladder cancer in persons who used pioglitazone was 430% higher in persons who used another diabetes drug.[3]   Based on these findings, the 2011 report concluded that “We found definite signal for bladder cancer associated with pioglitazone use”[4] and ““This issue needs constant epidemiologic surveillance and urgent definition by more specific studies.”[5]

In light of these serious and clear warnings by the medical community that the ingredients in Duetact® are associated with a dramatically-increased risk for bladder cancer, Tadaka Pharmaceuticals has failed to make adequate warnings on its product labels regarding these risks.  Therefore, a large number of people in the population may be at risk for what can be a life-threatening ailment through no fault of their own.  Tadaka Pharmaceuticals has the legal responsibility to disclose any and all risks associated with its products and must be held liable for injuries that result due to company withholding of information.

If you or a loved one has used Duetact® and suffered bladder cancer, you may be eligible to file a Duetact® lawsuit for compensation for your injuries.  For a free case consultation, you may reach our team of Duetact® lawyers by phone at (855) 452-5529 or by e-mail at justinian@dangerousdrugs.us.

Our Duetact Lawsuit Information page is great place to start if you have additional questions about Duetact.


[1] Piccinni, C et al. “Assessing the Association of Pioglitazone Use and Bladder Cancer Through Adverse Event Reporting” Diabetes Care 34:1369-71, 2011

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.