For diabetics to live a healthier life it is crucial that they manage their blood sugar levels at all times, and along with diet and exercise, there are a number of drugs available to help them do that. Invokana – the brand name for the drug canagliflozin – is one such medication, but it has been found to potentially cause a very serious side effect; diabetic ketoacidosis.
For those affected by the use of Invokana the law firm of Baron & Budd can offer advice on potential available legal action. Complete our contact form or call (866) 347-7765 to learn more.
How Invokana Works
Along with other medications like (dapagliflozin) and Jardiance (empagliflozin), Invokana is a member of a class of prescription drugs collectively known as sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. These drugs are designed to help diabetics pass excess sugar through increased urination, preventing a condition known as hyperglycemia, which is increased blood sugar levels that can potentially lead to coma or death in diabetic patients.
Invokana’s Early Success
Since being approved by the FDA in 2013, Invokana has become a popular choice among prescribing physicians and has earned its manufacturer, Johnson & Johnson, over $300 million in revenue.
The FDA has, however, been keeping a careful watch on the drug. In May of 2015, they issued a Safety Communication warning prescribers that Invokana was linked to the development of diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a dangerous condition that involves rising levels of acid in the blood that can prove fatal. It occurs when ketones – the medical term for these acidic waste products – accumulate in the body rather than being properly expelled. The symptoms of the condition include:
- Abdominal pain
According to the FDA, Johnson & Johnson has received reports of 20 patients developing diabetic ketoacidosis. The FDA’s European counterpart, the EMA, has received more than 100 similar reports. There have also been reports of an increased risk of bone fracture and loss of bone density in patients taking Invokana. Citing the results of a two-year study conducted on elderly patients taking the drug, the FDA has ordered that warnings about these risks are added to Invokana’s labelling as well.
In all, according to The Institute for Safe Medication Practices, the FDA has received over 450 complaints about Invokana, including complaints related to the following health conditions:
- Diabetic ketoacidosis
- Increased risk of bone fracture
- Loss of bone density
- Increased risk of fungal infections
- Kidney stones
- Kidney failure
- Urinary tract infection
Serious questions are now being raised about the use of Invokana. Are its potential benefits worth the possible risks? Legal claims against Johnson & Johnson over some of these adverse side effects are beginning to appear in the courts. With our long track record of helping clients hold drug companies accountable for their products, we are currently investigating Invokana and its side effects. If you or a loved one has been adversely affected by the drug, we may be able to help. To learn more simply complete our contact form or call us toll free at (866) 347-7765.