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Januvia and Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis

Januvia and Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis

Januvia has been linked to two cases of hemorrhagic pancreatitis, in which inflammation in the pancreas causes severe bleeding. In response, FDA published a warning about hemorrhagic pancreatitis in 2009.

What You Can Do & How We Can Help

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting Januvia induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Defective Drug Litigation Group or call us toll-free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

Overview

The pancreas is an organ involved in digestion and metabolism. It is located behind the stomach, where it secretes hormones (such as insulin) and digestive enzymes to break down food.

No one knows exactly what causes pancreatitis, but it is believed to occur when inflammation causes digestive enzymes activate and auto-digest pancreatic tissue. If the inflammation is not controlled, severe complications like hemorrhagic pancreatitis can occur.

What is Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis?

Hemorrhagic pancreatitis occurs when severe inflammation in the pancreas destroys tissues in the pancreas, ruptures blood vessels, and causes bleeding (hemorrhaging). Bleeding may occur inside the pancreas and abdomen. It is a severe complication that can lead to necrotizing pancreatitis

Does Januvia Cause Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis?

It is unknown whether Januvia (sitagliptin) causes hemorrhagic pancreatitis. However, the FDA published a Safety Communication about the risk in 2009, warning:

“Eighty-eight post-marketing cases of acute pancreatitis, including two cases of hemorrhagic or necrotizing pancreatitis in patients using sitagliptin, were reported to the Agency between October 2006 and February 2009.”

Januvia has been marketed and sold by Merck & Co. in the United States since 2006. It belongs to a new class of diabetes drugs that stimulate the pancreas to secrete more insulin by inhibiting dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4). This helps a diabetic person control their blood-sugar levels.

Unfortunately, there is a growing amount of evidence linking Januvia and hemorrhagic pancreatitis. Several other drugs in the same class as Januvia (such as Byetta and Janumet) have also been linked to hemorrhagic pancreatitis, which has prompted warnings from the FDA.

Symptoms of Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis

  • Abdominal pain, which may:
    • Radiate to the back
    • Be persistent or grow worse over several days
    • Worsen after eating, drinking, or while lying down
    • Become constant or severe
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Digestive problems (indigestion, diarrhea, constipation)
  • Weight loss, lack of appetite, anorexia
  • Jaundice (mild yellowing of skin or eyes)
  • Clay-colored stools
  • Fever
  • And more

What is the problem?

Hemorrhagic pancreatitis complications can be life-threatening, which is why most people with this disease require hospitalization. They may need to stop eating and drinking to give the pancreas time to rest, during which time they will receive intravenous fluids and nutrition. The goal of treatment is to reduce inflammation in the pancreas.

Complications of Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis

  • Kidney damage or kidney failure
  • Respiratory problems
  • Organ system failure
  • Increasing fluid in the abdomen
  • Pancreatic cysts
  • Fluid-filled abscesses
  • Heart failure
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension)
  • Necrotizing pancreatitis (death of pancreatic tissue)
  • Intestinal bleeding
  • Surgical treatment
  • Permanent pancreas damage
  • Disability
  • Death

Do I have a Januvia Lawsuit?

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting Januvia induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Defective Drug Litigation Group or call us toll-free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

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