September 2, 2013

Onlgyza Appears to Raise Risk of Heart Failure

A two year long study of two DPP-4 inhibitors (one not available in the U.S.) found that these drugs did not, as hoped, lower the risk of heart attack in people with diabetes who took them, and they found a surprising increase in cases of heart failure among people taking Onglyza.

UPDATE 2-Doctors get good and bad safety news on diabetes drugs

The study also claimed to find no sign of pancreatic disease with Onglyza, but there are several reasons to discount this finding:

1.  The study only lasted 2 years, which is far too short a time for the changes in pancreatic architecture discovered by Dr. Butler to result in pancreatitis. (Details HERE)

2. Cancers also take much longer than 2 years to cause symptoms. Pancreatic cancer, in particular, is almost always symptom free until it is too late for any treatment to keep the patient from dying within a few months. The patients in Dr. Butler's study who took Januvia and died with small precancerous tumors in their pancreases and abnormal cells throughout the pancreatic tissue had no symptoms suggesting anything was wrong with them.

The British Medical Journal looked into this issue and found disturbing signs of suppression of evidence suggesting this is a very real problem: Their findings are discussed here: Medcscape: BMJ Digs Deep Into Incretins and Pancreatic Cancer Debate.

The actual BMJ review article is found here:

Has pancreatic damage from glucagon suppressing diabetes drugs been underplayed?

The chances are very good that it will take 10 years or more for the pancreatic tumors these drugs are capable of growing to cause the epidemic of cancer deaths that I fear is coming. By the time the deaths appear, it will be too late to do anything.

Please do not take or let anyone you love take any of the incretin drugs. There is a lot of money going into studies like this that are supposed to reassure patients and keep the money machine cranking for the companies that sell these highly profitable drugs. But there is enough evidence, despite the white washes that these drugs are dangerous that there is no reason to take any of them.

No matter how bad your blood sugar might be, a combination of  lower carb diet and, if needed insulin, properly dosed (which, alas, it often isn't) will lower your blood sugar far more safely.