An article published (May 21, 2007) in the New England Journal of Medicine has doctors and diabetes patients scrambling to learn more about the link between Avandia (a drug for Type II diabetes) to a potentially increased risk of heart attacks. The analysis of the drug was conducted by Dr. Steven Nissen, a prominent cardiologist with the Cleveland Clinic, who interestingly was an early critic of Vioxx, a pain killer which has been withdrawn from the market. Read the Journal article here.
The FDA has issued an Alert which says in part: The FDA is aware of a potential safety issue related to Avandia (rosiglitazone). Safety data from controlled clinical trials have shown that there is a potentially significant increase in the risk of heart attack and heart-related deaths in patients taking Avandia. Patients who are taking Avandia, especially those who are known to have underlying heart disease or who are at high risk of heart attack should talk to their doctor about this new information as they evaluate the available treatment options for their type II diabetes. Read the entire FDA alert here.