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.

Recently, an ingredient in Duetact®, a popular Type-II diabetes drug, has been found to be associated with an increased risk for bladder cancer.  While another research team (Piccinni et al, 2011) published a report linking pioglitazone to bladder cancer, this report, titled “Mortality and Other Important Diabetes-Related Outcomes With Insulin vs Other Antihyperglycemic Therapies in Type 2 Diabetes” demonstrates an association between use of sulfonylurea, another ingredient in Duetact® and the development of cancer, and was published by Craig J. Currie et al in 2013.

“This was a retrospective cohort study using data from the UK General Practice Research Database, 2000-2010,” which means that Currie et al. accessed a large database of medical records and sorted through thousands of medical histories to find and compile a list of previously-reported cases of patients who developed cancer or another ailment after having used sulfonylurea.  Using this method, Currie et al. found 84,622 patients with Type-II diabetes, using a range of diabetes drugs and drug combinations: “metformin monotherapy, sulfonylurea monotherapy, insulin monotherapy, metformin plus sulfonylurea combination therapy, and insulin plus metformin combination therapy”[1].  To evaluate the safety of each of these drugs and drug combinations, Currie et al. measured the relative risk for first-time major cardiac event, first cancer, and mortality.[2]

Statistical analysis showed that users of sulfonylurea were about 1.4 times as likely to develop cancer than were users of other medications, and that insulin monotherapy dramatically increased the risk for major cardiac events, and all-cause mortality.[3]

Despite these warnings, the manufacturer of Duetact® (Tadaka Pharmaceuticals) still continues to use sulfonylurea in Duetact® and continues to downplay the risk for cancer caused by the use of its product.  As a result, a number of Duetact® cancer lawsuits are currently being filed around the country.  If you used Duetact and developed cancer, please do not hesitate to contact our team of Duetact® lawyers for a free case consultation.

At your convenience, you may reach our offices by phone at (855) 452-5529 or by e-mail at justinian@dangerousdrugs.us.  We have the experience, resources, and skills required to fight even the largest pharmaceutical companies for the justice you deserve.  Call today and see how we can help.

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


[1] Currie, C. et al. “Mortality and Other Important Diabetes-Related Outcomes With Insulin vs Other Antihyperglycemic Therapies in Type 2 Diabetes” Endocrinol Metab 98:668-677, 2013

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.