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Concern From Doctors Regarding the Cardiovascular Safety of GlaxoSmithKline's Avandia Increases Nine-Fold Following Publication of Meta-Analysis
Date:4/22/2008

Nearly Three-Quarters of Physicians Have Switched Patients to Merck's

Januvia, According to a New Report from Decision Resources

WALTHAM, Mass., April 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that the percentage of primary care physicians (PCPs) and endocrinologists who consider the cardiovascular safety of GlaxoSmithKline's Avandia to be a major concern increased more than nine-fold following publication of a meta-analysis. Published in May 2007 by Steve Nissen in the New England Journal of Medicine, the meta-analysis calls into question the cardiovascular safety of Avandia and features analysis of data from several different trials showing that the drug increases the risk of myocardial infarction by 43 percent. Prescriptions for Avandia dropped significantly in the weeks following publication of the meta-analysis. According to the new Physician and Payer Forum report entitled Avandia One Year Later-A Physician and Payer Perspective, the full impact of the meta-analysis on Avandia prescribing has not yet been felt. 58 percent of PCPs and 52 percent of endocrinologists say they will reduce their prescribing of Avandia over the next year.

The report also finds that nearly three-quarters of physicians say they have switched patients to Merck's Januvia as a result of the Avandia meta-analysis. More than 80 percent of surveyed physicians say they will increase the number of total prescriptions they write for Januvia over the next two years. Although clinicians and managed care organizations surveyed consider metformin (Bristol-Myers Squibb's Glucophage, generics) to offer the best overall safety and efficacy, Januvia received the second greatest number of votes for "agent with the best overall safety profile" and for "lowest risk of hypoglycemia." In comparison, Amylin/Eli Lilly's Byetta was chosen by endocrinologists and MCOs as the agent
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SOURCE Decision Resources
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