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Januvia Cancer and Complaints on the Rise

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San Diego, CAAs of November 2014, more than 540 incretin mimetics lawsuits, concerning a class of drugs that includes Januvia, have been filed in the Southern District of California. Claims have been on the rise since the FDA, in March 2013, warned the public that a study had found precancerous changes in the pancreatic cells of Januvia, Byetta and Victoza users.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins reported that more than 1,000 patients with Type 2 diabetes who were treated with incretin mimetics showed a 150 percent increased incidence of pancreatitis, compared to those treated with other drugs. This study is particularly alarming to Januvia users who are worried that their pancreatitis diagnosis could lead to Januvia cancer.

As of October 2014, more than 300 incretin mimetics lawsuits alleging pancreatic cancer have been filed in district courts throughout the US. Because of this increase in litigation, a multidistrict litigation in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California has been established.

In September 2014, Frances Pickett joined the MDL. She filed a Januvia lawsuit against Merck & Co., claiming that the drug company failed to warn users of Januvia risks, and it was their responsibility to do so. Pickett was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last year, after taking Januvia from November 2011 through September 2013.

Almost four years ago Marty was hospitalized due to a high sugar count. Just before he was sent home, Marty’s doctor asked him if anything else was bothering him. “I told my doctor that I had a strange feeling in the left side of my chest,” says Monty. “He sent me to radiology and later that day I got the news that there was a black mass in my left kidney. After more testing, my kidney was removed because it was cancerous. Up to this point I had taken Januvia for two years. When I heard about Januvia cancer, I immediately stopped taking it - I can’t believe no one told me to discontinue this drug, not even my doctor! And now I find out that Merck knew their drug causes cancer. It’s unbelievable that this can happen.”

Januvia plaintiffs claim that Merck deliberately concealed evidence that Januvia caused pancreatitis because such side effects would hurt sales.

The MDL No. 2452 is expected to handle pretrial matters more expediently and reduce duplicative discovery, prevent inconsistent pretrial rulings, and conserve the resources of the parties and the court.

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READER COMMENTS

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And here I keep being told that it only causes pancreatic cancer. I have been on Januvia for app 4 years now. And was diagnosed with Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma (terminal kidney cancer) 2 years ago. No one in my family has any kind of kidney problems. I need to talk to someone about this.

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