Serious health issues regarding Actos and its relationship to bone fractures have been capturing the attention of health professionals and Type 2 diabetes patients across the country and around the globe.
For more than fourteen years, millions upon millions of Type 2 diabetes patients have been prescribed Takeda Pharmaceutical's Actos in an effort to fight the disease and regiment their blood-sugar. Amid the many dangerous side effects that have been reported about Actos over the years, the divisive drug has had a particularly detrimental side effect in women. Studies show that women who take Actos are 200%-300% more likely to fracture or break bones than women who take other types of medicine for Type 2 diabetes. Research has shown that Actos (otherwise known as pioglitazone) promotes significant bone loss and structure malformations.
The drug family to which Actos is linked, thiazolidinedione (otherwise known as TZD), was developed to control Type 2 diabetes by lowering glucose levels in the body. Taken orally, Actos lowers cellular insulin resistance and is supposed to improve ways in which the body responds to insulin.
What's more is that researchers have found that most fractures take place in the lower arm and leg areas, as well as the hip, which can be extremely detrimental to older patients. Researchers also suggest that these breaks and fractures typically happen if the patient has been using Actos for a year or longer. Like most dangerous drugs, studies suggest that the longer the drug is in use, the more hazardous to one's health it can become.
Science behind the research suggests that Actos may be causing these breaks and fractures because it activates the PPAR-gamma receptor. PPAR-gamma is produced in fat cells and ensures those cells are more receptive to insulin. In addition, however, it also slows the formation of new bone structure and accelerates bone failure. While scientists are not 100% sure yet why this happens, they remain researching the cause, and most drug examiners highly disregard the use of Actos. Even with this knowledge, Takeda Pharmaceuticals remains implicitly confident that they have yet to find the exact reason for the breaking and fracturing of bones in their patients.
Although the FDA has not recalled Actos from the medical market, they have issued warnings to women about the possibility of bone breaks and fracturing. The FDA specifically cites women with osteoporosis, low calcium intake, and a history of weakened bones to consult their physicians immediately if they have been taking Actos for any extended period of time.
Although most Actos lawsuits are centered on bladder cancer and heart failure that the drug has been proven to cause, a number of new cases surrounding bone fractures and breaks are on the rise.