According to a new study published in the British Medicine Journal which compared healthy people with patients diagnosed with bladder cancer, Actos use has been associated with an 83% increased risk of bladder cancer and a 200% increased risk of bladder cancer if Actos is used for more than 2 years. Previous research indicated that Actos increased one’s chances of developing bladder cancer by only 40%.The study concluded that rates were highest in clients who took Actos for 2 year or whose cumulative dosage was over 28,000 mg. The study surveyed over 115,000 patients who were treated with various diabetes drugs. The survey took place over a 21 year period between 1988 and 2009.
Researchers concluded that use of Actos for more than two years was linked to 88 additional diagnoses of bladder cancer per 100,000 patient years. Patients who took more than 28,000 milligrams of Actos during their treatment had a much higher risk of developing bladder cancer: the number rose to 137 additional diagnoses of bladder cancer per 100,000 patient years.
The researchers noted that physicians, patients, and top regulatory agencies should consider the recent finding when considering prescribing the drug for future uses, “Prescribers who are ultimately responsible for therapeutic choices can legitimately question whether the benefit-risk ratio of pioglitazone (Actos) is still acceptable for their patients with diabetes,” stated Dominique Hillaire-Buys and Jean-Luc Faillie from the Department of Medical Pharmacology and Toxicology in Montpellier, France in an editorial accompanying the study.
This study further solidifies a growing body of research that indicates a link between Actos and bladder cancer. It also solidifies claims that Takeda Pharmaceuticals failed to perform safety studies before marketing Actos and putting thousands of diabetic patients at risk for bladder cancer.