New York, NY (PRWEB) August 15, 2014
Healthcare regulators in British Columbia have stopped patient coverage of a diabetes drug now involved in hundreds of Byetta lawsuits (http://www.byettalawsuit.com/) as well as several other medications, Bernstein Liebhard LLP reports.
According to a notice posted earlier this month on Merck Canada's website, the British Columbia Medical Beneficiary and Pharmaceutical Services Division advised the company that patients taking their drug, Januvia, would no longer be covered as of February 5, 2015. The decision to delist this medication was effective on August 5th, the article indicates.*
In the U.S., hundreds of cases filed against the manufacturers of Byetta, Januvia and similar treatments are now pending in a federal multidistrict litigation underway in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of California. Lawsuits in this proceeding similarly allege pancreatic cancer, pancreatitis and other serious side effects caused by incretin mimetics, court records indicate. (In Re: Incretins Products Liability, Sales and Marketing Litigation, MDL 2452)
“We are not surprised by British Columbia’s recent decision to discontinue coverage of incretin mimetics from their prescription drug program, as our Firm’s lawyers continue to hear from individuals who allegedly developed pancreatic cancer and other serious injuries due to use of Januvia and Byetta,” says Bernstein Liebhard LLP, a nationwide law firm representing victims of defective medical devices and drugs. The Firm is currently offering free and confidential case reviews of Byetta and Januvia lawsuits to patients who may have been injured by either of the medications.
As the British Columbia PharmaCare Benefits Program ceases coverage of Januvia, Janumet and other DPP-4 inhibitor diabetes drugs including Byetta, the federal litigation involving these products continues to mount. A Case List updated on July 15th indicates that 463 claims have been filed in the Southern District of California on behalf of individuals who allegedly developed pancreatic cancer and other side effects they and their doctors were inadequately warned about by manufacturers.
According to court records, numerous Byetta lawsuits have also been centralized in a consolidated litigation currently underway in California Superior Court. (In re: Byetta Cases, JCCP No. 4574)
Concerns surrounding Byetta and other incretin mimetics have continued to grow since March 2013, when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) alerted the public that it was investigating possible risks associated with the medications. According to the warning, a previously unpublished study discovered cellular changes in the pancreas called pancreatic duct metaplasia, a condition that often precedes cancer. The FDA said at the time that no confirmed link had been determined, but that its review was ongoing.
In April 2013, the safety of Byetta was further questioned when the Institute for Safe Medicine Practices published data from the FDA that revealed 263 reports of pancreatitis, as well as 71 pancreatic cancer cases and 14 instances of thyroid cancer in Byetta users over a 12-month period. Incretin mimetics were most commonly associated with pancreatic cancer compared to other classes of diabetes medications, the review also found.
Individuals who took Byetta or Januvia and was later diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, pancreatitis or thyroid cancer may be eligible to receive compensation for lost wages, medical bills and other damages. Learn more about the possible link between Byetta and pancreatic cancer by visiting Bernstein Liebhard LLP’s website. For a free legal review, please call 800-511-5092.
*merck.ca/Assets/News/Sitagliptin%20Delisting%20Press%20Release%20V%20Aug%2042014%20FINAL2_EN.pdf, Merck Canada, August 5, 2014.
*ismp.org/quarterwatch/pdfs/2012Q3.pdf, ISMP, April 2013
About Bernstein Liebhard LLP
Bernstein Liebhard LLP is a New York-based law firm exclusively representing injured persons in complex individual and class action lawsuits nationwide since 1993. As a national law firm, Bernstein Liebhard LLP possesses all of the legal and financial resources required to successfully challenge billion dollar pharmaceutical and medical device companies. As a result, our attorneys and legal staff have been able to recover more than $3 billion on behalf of our clients. The Firm has been named by The National Law Journal to the Plaintiffs’ Hot List, recognizing the top plaintiffs firms in the country, for the past 12 consecutive years. Bernstein Liebhard LLP is the only firm in the country to be named to this prestigious list every year since it was first published in 2003.
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