In Feb. 2017, Texas resident Wrendell Chester, filed a lawsuit Wrendell Chester v. Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, Astrazeneca Pharmaceuticals LP and McKesson Corporation, Case No. 4:17-cv-00316, US District Court, Southern District of Texas alleging that the Type 2 diabetes drug Onglyza (saxagliptin) caused his heart failure.
Chester claims that he suffered congestive heart failure, heart failure and hypoxic respiratory failure, a condition where there is not enough oxygen in the blood, after he took both Onglyza and XR (saxagliptin and metformin extended release) between 2010 and 2015, according to the complaint.
The FDA approved Onglyza in 2009 "to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus," according to the FDA approval letter.
However, people who allegedly suffered congestive heart failure and death as a result of congestive heart failure after taking Onglyza weren't warned about that risk by Bristol-Myers and Astrozeneca, says attorney Dr. Shezad Malik, who is also a medical doctor.
"Studies have come out recently that suggest that patients who take this medication are at risk for heart failure and then death," says Dr. Malik.
Saxagliptin, which is an active ingredient in Onglyza, has also been linked by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to heart attack risks.
The FDA in April 2016 issued a drug safety communication, adding warnings about heart failure risks to labels of type 2 diabetes medicines containing saxagliptin and alogliptin, which are part of the class of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor drugs used with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes.
READ MORE ONGLYZA AND KOMBIGLYZE XR LEGAL NEWS
Astrazeneca added heart failure risk warnings to Onglyza and Kombiglyze XR package labels in 2016.
"Some diabetics have heart disease, and heart disease can be worsened by taking this medication," says Dr. Malik. Patients who have developed increased congestive heart failure or died may have a claim against the drug manufacturer, he says.
Dr. Malik represents individuals in personal injury cases through his law office, The Dr. Shezad Malik Law Firm, in Dallas, TX.