A report that was released this Tuesday has said that an analysis of four clinical trials involving 14,000 patients found that diabetes medication Avandia taken over a lengthy period of time increases the risk of heart attack by 42%.
It marks one of the first studies that looks at how use of Avandia for one year or longer, in patients with type 2 diabetes, affects the risk of heart attack, heart failure and mortality.
The Food and Drug Administration recently required a label to be put on Avandia, made by British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, and similar treatments, warning of increased risk of heart failure.
An analysis of 42 short-term clinical studies published in May in the New England Journal of Medicine found that Avandia boosts heart attack risk by 43 percent.
Sonal Singh, MD, lead author and an assistant professor of internal medicine at Wake Forest said, “The public health impact of potential harm with rosiglitazone is substantial. Regulatory agencies should urgently evaluate whether this drug should remain on the market.”
“There is no need for physicians, health plans or patients to wait for regulatory action,” added Curt Furberg, a co-author of the report.
“On the contrary, they should take prompt action and restrict the use of Avandia, especially since safer alternatives are available,” he said.