Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR belong to a class of diabetes drugs known as DPP-4 inhibitors. The two drugs are almost identical as both contain the same active ingredient, Saxagliptin.
Unfortunately, a growing amount of research has linked the drugs to an increase in a patient risk for heart failure, congestive heart failure, cardiac failure or cardiac-related death.
These drugs work by lowering blood-sugar levels by influencing a hormone called GLP-1, which stimulates the growth of the cells in the pancreas as that produces insulin. Drugs like these are called “incretin mimetics” because they mimic metabolic hormones that increase insulin production. The issue with incretin mimetics like Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR is that the long-term risks are not fully known since the drugs are still new.
Diabetes is a life-long disease that affects the way the body manages glucose in the blood. Most people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes- an estimated 27 million people in the United States alone. Type 2 diabetes is typically treated by making lifestyle changes such as an increasing physical activity, losing weight and improving nutrition.
Two common drugs used to treat type 2 diabetes, Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR, have come under recent scrutiny for their potentially dangerous side effects and can be addressed with the help of a dangerous drug attorney in Atlanta.
Serious Side Effects of Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR
According to their websites, serious side effects can happen in people who take Onglyza or Kombiglyze XR, including heart failure.
Symptoms of heart failure can include:
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea) under exertion or when lying down
- Fatigue and weakness
- Swelling (edema) in legs, ankles and feet
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Reduced ability to exercise
- Persistent cough or wheezing with white or pink blood-tinged phlegm
- Increased urination at night
- Abdominal swelling (ascites)
- Rapid weight gain from fluid retention
- Lack of appetite and nausea
- Difficulty concentrating or decreased alertness
- Sudden, severe shortness of breath and coughing up pink, foamy mucus
- Chest pain if you’ve suffered heart failure by a heart attack
Heart problems including heart failure, congestive heart failure, cardiac failure can be potentially deadly as they can lead to cardiac arrest. If you’ve experienced any of the above symptoms, seek medical attention right away.
FDA Warns about Risks Associated with Onglyza and Ombiglyze XR
The FDA approved Onglyza in 2009, while Kombiglyze XR was approved in 2010. Since their approval, the drugs have been scrutinized after studies linked them to serious complications. Both the FDA and various medical journals have warned patients and medical professionals of the risks associated with Saxagliptin.
- 2010 – The FDA reports shocking findings from a clinical trial after staff found that Saxagliptin is associated with “significant or near-significant” increased risk of death from all causes, not just heart problems.
- 2013 – The FDA issues a Safety Communication explaining a possible increased risk of pancreatitis and pre-cancerous complications linked to Saxagliptin.
- 2013 – Another study published in the New England Journal of Medicine reveals an increased risk of hospitalization for heart failure after taking Saxagliptin, prompting the FDA to issue another Safety Communication in 2014.
- 2015 – A study known as SAVOR (Saxagliptin Assessment of Vascular Outcomes Recorded in Patients with Diabetes Mellitus), found that Saxagliptinincreases the risk of hospitalization for heart failure by about 27%.
- 2015 – An FDA advisory panel concludes that patients who take Saxagliptin face an increased risk of heart failure – a potentially fatal condition.
Both medications now come with labels warning consumers about the drugs’ potential for serious cardiac events. Despite evidence of serious risks, the drugs remain available for consumer use.
Drug Makers Held Liable for Negligence
The manufacturers of the drugs that injured you should be held liable for your injuries.
Onglyza was developed and marketed by American-based Bristol-Myers Squibb and foreign-based AstraZeneca. Kombiglyze XR shares a common manufacturer, AstraZeneca.
Bristol-Meyers Squibb is a pharmaceutical giant headquartered in New York known for manufacturing prescription drugs in several therapeutic areas. In 2017 alone, the company’s revenue was $20.78 billion. AstraZeneca is headquartered in Cambridge, UK. In 2017, the company’s revenue reached $22.465 billion.
Despite their influence, both Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca have faced a large number of complaints and lawsuits regarding dangerous side effects from Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR. The result has been countless unsuspecting people now living with deadly heart-related conditions.
When to Contact an Attorney
Hiring an attorney might feel intimidating at first. However, compensation could help cover your medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering and more.
Contact an attorney if:
- Your Onglyza or Kombiglyze XR prescription has caused you pain or other serious complications
- You are suffering from heart disease or heart-related complications after taking Onglyza or Kombiglyze XR
- Your loved one passed unexpectedly after taking Onglyza or Kombiglyze XR
- If you identify with any of the above points, you may qualify for compensation.
Bristol-Meyers Squibb and AstraZeneca promised revolutionary drugs—but the results proved otherwise. This should not have happened. These pharmaceutical companies should be held responsible for their negligence. If you or a loved one have suffered after taking Onglyza or Kombiglyze XR, it’s important that you speak with a lawyer to determine if you are eligible for compensation for your injuries.