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***UPDATE: Please note that Riddle & Brantley is no longer accepting these cases.

Do I Have Grounds for an Actos Lawsuit?

North Carolina Drug Injury Attorneys Advocate for Cancer Victims

**Please note that our lawyers are no longer accepting new Actos cases.**

If you or a loved one took Actos, ActoPlus Met, ActoPlus Met XR or Duetact, then you may have a legal claim against the drug manufacturer if you also developed bladder cancer or another dangerous condition. Actos was developed to aid in controlling type 2 diabetes. Approximately 2.3 million people across the United States filled prescriptions for the drug in 2010. However, on June 15, 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a safety warning that it may be associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer as well as heart failure and other complications. However, despite these known drug defects and numerous lawsuits, the pharmaceutical company continues to market Actos.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking the prescription drug Actos, you may be entitled to compensation for all losses and damages. The dangerous drug injury attorneys at Riddle & Brantley can explain your right to compensation from the pharmaceutical company through an Actos lawsuit. Additionally, if your doctor failed to warn you or a loved one of the known side effects of Actos, such as the risk of congestive heart failure, then you may be entitled to compensation from the physician as well.

What are the Dangers and Possible Side Effects of Actos?

In 2007, the FDA found that pioglitazone, brand-name Actos, significantly increases the risk of heart failure. They then required the drug’s manufacturer, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, to include a black box warning (the most severe FDA warning) on the packaging. Some early warning signs of congestive heart failure include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Swelling of the feet and legs
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Sudden weight gain
  • Persistent cough
  • Nausea
  • Coughing up pink or bloody phlegm

Later studies revealed that patients may also face an increased risk of developing bladder cancer from extended use of Actos. These findings resulted in many countries banning Actos from the market along with other defective drugs. However, it is still available in the United States today, though the FDA does recommend against its use for those who currently have bladder cancer.

Severe Actos side effects and symptoms of bladder cancer are:

  • Frequent urination or feeling of need to urinate
  • Blood in urine
  • Pain during urination
  • Back or lower abdominal pain

If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your doctor right away. Then, speak with a pharmaceutical litigation lawyer to learn your options for compensation.

Which Studies Linked Actos to Bladder Cancer?

In 2013, eHealthMe conducted a study which analyzed Actos and the risk of bladder cancer among 29,989 patients. In this study, researchers analyzed FDA records of Actos users. They found that every person taking the drug reported having at least one side effect. Furthermore, 1,631 Actos users developed bladder cancer. Of these, most developed bladder cancer after taking Actos for two to five years prior to diagnosis. Many also developed this cancer after taking the drug for between five and 10 years prior to diagnosis.

However, this was not the first time that a study linked Actos to bladder cancer. In June 2011, France and Germany banned the sale of Actos after the French Medicines Agency discovered this connection. This study analyzed the cancer rates in an estimated 155,000 individuals taking Actos in France between 2006 and 2009. Researchers also collected data from 1.3 million diabetics who did not take the drug. The results demonstrated that those taking Actos were at a 22 percent higher risk of getting bladder cancer compared to those taking other diabetic drugs. Furthermore, the study demonstrated that those taking 28,000 mg or more during the study period had the highest bladder cancer risk.

Perhaps worse, in 2012, a former employee of Takeda Pharmaceuticals filed a lawsuit against the company. In this suit, she claimed that the company knew about the dangerous side effects of Actos, and hid test results from the FDA. Nevertheless, Takeda Pharmaceuticals continues to sell and market the drug, downplaying these dangerous side effects.

What Can I Do If I Took Actos for Diabetes?

The FDA urges patients who have taken Actos to contact their doctors immediately if they experience any of the symptoms listed above. The warning labels for medicines containing pioglitazone now carry information about the risk of bladder cancer. However, doctors may continue to prescribe it as a diabetes treatment.

If you or a loved one took Actos and developed bladder cancer or experienced congestive heart failure, then a pharmaceutical litigation attorney from our law firm may be able to help you get compensation for your injuries and damages.

Questions About an Actos Lawsuit? Contact Our North Carolina Drug Injury Attorneys Today

At Riddle & Brantley, our attorneys share a commitment to helping injury victims recover compensation and seek justice. Over the years, our attorneys have represented hundreds of victims injured by defective drugs or devices. We find that the sooner these victims seek legal counsel, the better. By doing so, it enables our legal team to gather critical evidence and documents needed to formulate a robust case against the party responsible for your injuries, even if the party is a large pharmaceutical company.

With locations in Goldsboro, Jacksonville, Raleigh, and Kinston, our attorneys serve injured victims throughout the state of North Carolina and elsewhere. We are always ready to travel to you, and operate on a contingency fee basis. This means we will not charge you attorney fees for our services unless you receive a favorable verdict or settlement offer.

For more information about your options for an Actos lawsuit, call at (800) 525-7111 or contact us online today.