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How Dangerous Is Invokana?

Invokana continues to be linked to serious health problems. Our office has closely followed developments with the diabetes medication Invokana since it was first approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Although relatively new to the market, many health injuries are already associated with this drug.

Invokana (canagliflozin) is marketed to treat Type 2 diabetes. The drug is one of a relatively new class of diabetes medications. This class of medications is known as sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Other SGLT2 drugs include Jardiance, Farxiga, Glyxambi, and Xigduo XR. These drugs alter kidney function to prevent reabsorption of glucose into the patient’s blood stream. For more detailed information, please read the report on our firm website.

We have watched Invokana closely because of its association with the health problem diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a dangerous adverse health issue suffered by some patients taking Invokana. What is diabetic ketoacidosis? It is a build-up of acid in the blood. Symptoms can include abdominal pain, nausea, fatigue, difficulty breathing and confusion. In May 2015, the FDA issued a safety communication warning patients about the risk of ketoacidosis from Invokana.

Although we began monitoring Invokana because of its association with diabetic ketoacidosis, this is not the only potential injury linked to the drug. In September 2015, the FDA mandated new Invokana bone fracture warnings indicating the medication may lead to decreased bone density.

First, we saw warnings concerning ketoacidosis, a build-up of acid in the blood of patients. Then, we saw warnings of bone density loss and fractures. Those are pretty serious conditions. What could be next?

Now, we see serious questions about an increase in lower limb amputations among patients using Invokana. To be fair to the drug’s maker Johnson & Johnson, these newest concerns are only preliminary. That is, more testing is needed before researchers can clearly link any increased risk of amputations. On May 18, 2016, the FDA issued a new safety communication about Invokana. Here is the FDA’s latest communication about Invokana and the risk of foot/leg amputations.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is alerting the public about interim safety results from an ongoing clinical trial that found an increase in leg and foot amputations, mostly affecting the toes, in patients treated with the diabetes medicine canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet). We have not determined whether canagliflozin increases the risk of leg and foot amputations. We are currently investigating this new safety issue and will update the public when we have more information.

The Blackwell Law Firm will continue to follow developments surrounding Invokana. We are currently investigating potential defective product claims involving Invokana use and diabetic ketoacidosis. As research continues, we will closely monitor these other potential injuries as well.