Diabetes Drug Lawsuit

The field of diabetes treatment has exploded in the recent past and many new diabetes medications have been approved in a short period of time. Several of these medications have already been linked to serious harm and have been discontinued but other potentially harmful diabetes drugs are still being marketed. Patients who experience severe side effects from diabetes medications may require hospitalization with costly and extensive medical treatments or may be at risk of death.

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Why Are There Diabetes Drug Lawsuits?

Antidiabetic drugs have been linked to serious side effects and health risks, leading many of the affected patients to file lawsuits against the manufacturers. Medical injury lawsuits have been filed for costs associated with medical treatments, lost wages, future medical treatments, pain and suffering, and wrongful death.

Why Have Plaintiffs Filed Diabetes Drug Lawsuits?

Many diabetes drug classes have been founded and approved over a short period of time. Unfortunately, a lot of these approved antidiabetic drug classes have caused adverse side effects in health risks and patients such as heart failure, liver failure, dialysis, and even death. 

Lawsuits claim that many of the manufacturers of these drugs, such as Johnson & Johnson, knew that these drugs could harm the patients, but did not advise the patients or doctors. 

Which Diabetes Medications Are Associated With Lawsuits?

There are a multitude of new diabetes drug classes that have been introduced.

The classes are as follows: 

  • Biguanides
  • Sodium-Glucose Co-transporter Type 2 (SGLT2) Inhibitors or Gliflozins
  • Thiazolidinedione (TZD) or Glitozones
  • Glinides or Meglatinides
  • Dipeptidyl Peptidase IV (DPP-4) Inhibitors or Gliptins
  • Alpha-glucosidase Inhibitors
  • Glucagon-like Peptide-1 (GLP-1) Agonists or Incretins
  • Insulins

What Diabetes Drug Lawsuit Settlements Have There Been?

Over the years, there have been many lawsuits against a multitude of diabetes drugs. Since there are so many named diabetes drugs on the market, there are thousands of dollars in settlements across the nation. 

For Incretin Mimetic drugs (Byetta, Bydureon, and Victoza), there have been lawsuit settlements from manufacturers Bristol-Myers Squibb, AstraZeneca, and Novo Nordisk. Novo Nordisk alone paid almost $60 million dollars, with the other settlement amounts being undisclosed. 

Other notable settlements include Thousands of lawsuits filed against the manufacturer of Actos resulting in $2.5 billion in settlements, including one settlement for $9 million. As well as over 50,000 Avandia lawsuits settle for more than $2.3 billion by 2013. 

What Diabetes Drug Lawsuits Are There?

As of 2023, there are no active lawsuits against manufacturers for adverse effects caused by diabetes drugs. 

What Is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a life-long, incurable disease that causes blood sugar to rise. Untreated diabetes can lead to many health risks and medical problems, including cardiovascular disease. 

What Kinds of Diabetes Are There?

There are many types of diabetes, but the two common types are Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. 

What Is Type 1 Diabetes?

Type 1 is an autoimmune disorder where the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells in the pancreas. This can lead to the body no longer creating insulin, causing glucose to build up in the blood. 

What Is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 is the most common type of diabetes and the type that is mostly treated with the drugs associated with lawsuits. With Type 2 diabetes, the body still produces insulin, but the body becomes resistant to it. Insulin will gradually stop working, causing glucose to build in the blood over time. 

What Are Diabetes Drugs?

There are a number of different drugs that are used to treat Type 2 diabetes.

A list of the common drugs can include: 

  • Metformin
  • Sulfonylureas and Glinides
  • Thiazolidinediones
  • DPP-4 Inhibitors and GLP-1 Receptor Agonists
  • SGLT2 Inhibitors

How Do Antidiabetic Drugs Work?

Different drugs work in different ways to treat Type 2 diabetes. 

How Does Metformin Work?

Metformin works by helping restore the body’s response to insulin by making the cells more sensitive to it. It can also decrease the amount of blood sugar that the liver produces and that the intestines or stomach absorb. 

How Does Sulonylureas Work?

Sulfonylureas work by stimulating insulin secretion and act by binding the SRU subunit of the ATP-sensitive potassium channel and inducing channel closure.

How Do Glinides Work?

Glinides work similarly to Sulfonylureas by stimulating the pancreatic beta cells to produce more insulin for the body.

How Do Thiazolidinediones Work?

TZDs work by binding to a protein in cells to activate genes and create new proteins that reduce insulin resistance. Similar to Metformin, it causes the cells to become more sensitive. 

How Do DPP-4 Inhibitors Work?

 DPP-4 Inhibitors work by blocking the action of DPP-4, an enzyme that destroys the hormone incretin. Incretins help the body produce more insulin, so by blocking DPP-4 actions, more insulin can be produced, lowering the glucose level in the blood. 

How Do GLP-1 Receptor Agonists Work?

GLP-1 Receptor Agonists lower the glucose level by stimulating glucose-dependent insulin to release from the pancreas. 

How Do SGLT Inhibitors Work?

SGLT Inhibitors work by reducing renal tubular glucose reabsorption, producing a reduction in blood glucose levels without stimulating insulin release. They also help the body excrete excess glucose in the urine. 

Who Created Diabetes Drugs?

There are a wide range of diabetes drugs and a long history of diabetes treatment in America. The most common manufacturers of diabetes drugs are big corporations such as Novo Nordisk, Merck & Co., Inc., AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, and Bayer. 

What Are Diabetes Drugs Prescribed To Treat?

Diabetes drugs are used to create insulin in the body or reduce the blood glucose levels in the body. There are many drugs that have certain effects and are used in a multitude of ways, but the main goal is to stabilize the body’s insulin and blood-glucose amounts.  

What Are the Side Effects of Diabetes Drugs?

Each drug has lists of its own, specific side effects. It’s important to ask your doctor about these side effects and do your research beforehand. 

What Are the Common Side Effects of Diabetes Drugs?

Common side effects experienced by the most common diabetic drugs include: 

  • Low blood sugar
  • Upset stomach
  • Skin rash or itching
  • Weight gain
  • Gas
  • Bloating and diarrhea 

What Are the Adverse Side Effects of Diabetes Drugs?

Some of the more serious side effects of the most used diabetic drugs are: 

  • Ketoacidosis
  • Lacoacidosis
  • Severe UTIs
  • Kidney failure
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Heart failure
  • Heart attack
  • Liver failure
  • Bone fractures
  • Amputation
  • Dialysis 
  • Death

What Are the FDA’s Warnings About Diabetes Drugs?

In 2016, there was a safety announcement issued by the FDA for type-2 diabetes medications containing saxagliptin and alogliptin. These drugs (Onglyza, Kombiglyze, Nesina, Kazano, and Oseni) have been associated with an increase in heart failure, especially in patients who have heart disease or kidney disease. 

Another warning was released in 2016 about Metformin-containing medications. They required labeling changes to mention that medications containing metformin are not suggested to be used by patients who already have reduced kidney function. 

Are Diabetes Drugs Still on the Market?

Despite some corporations like Novo Nordisk taking their diabetes medications off the shelf for a period of time, diabetes drugs are still on the market. It is up to the patients and the doctors to discuss which diabetes medication is necessary and if the benefits outweigh the risks.

Notwithstanding claims relating to this product, the drug/medical device remains approved by the U.S. FDA. 


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