Avandia (rosiglitazone) is an anti-diabetic drug in the class of drugs known as thiazolidinediones. It is manufactured and marketed by GlaxoSmithKlein and used primarily to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus, also known as adult onset diabetes. It works by helping the body make better use of naturally occurring insulin.
Avandia is prescribed as a standalone preparation or in combination with sulfonylurea, insulin, metformin as Avandamet, or glimepiride as Avandaryl. It is also sometimes prescribed "off-label" to treat Alzheimer's disease.
In March 2000, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recalled Rezulin, another drug in the same class as Avandia. Avandia was intended to replace Rezulin as a safer alternative. Since Avandia's approval, however, the list of potential side effects has continued to grow, and some argue that it has not proved to be an improvement over its predecessor.
Potential side effects of Avandia listed by the FDA include:
- Hepatitis and other serious liver injury, including liver failure leading to transplant or death
- Cardiovascular problems and congestive heart failure
- Macular edema, or swelling in the back of the eye, leading to decreased or blurry vision
- Dangerously low blood sugar
- Recurrence of ovulation in women who had stopped having periods but who had not reached menopause nor use effective birth control
Symptoms that could indicate a development of potential liver problems include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, loss of appetite, tiredness or lack of energy, dark urine, or jaundice. Symptoms that could indicate a development of potential heart failure include an unusually rapid increase in weight or edema (fluid retention) or shortness of breath. Anyone who has taken Avandia, Avandaryl or Avandamet and experiences any of these symptoms should contact their healthcare provider immediately.
Other potential side effects attributed to Avandia include:
- Increased incidence of bone fractures
- Pulmonary hypertension
- Low red blood cell count
- Cold-like symptoms
The FDA also cautions in their May 21, 2007 safety alert that anyone taking Avandia or suffering from type 2 diabetes who is at high risk of heart attack or with underlying heart disease should discuss treatment options with their doctor.
If you have been injured as the result of having been prescribed Avandia, Avandaryl or Avandamet, you may be entitled to compensation. Due to statutes of limitations, however, you should promptly consult with an experienced product defect or medical malpractice attorney who can evaluate your case.
Contact our Personal Injury Lawyers and Attorneys today to find an experienced pharmaceutical injury lawyer.