Avandia, a diabetes medication, may help control blood sugar levels – but it can also lead to heart problems. That’s according to the FDA and its counterpart overseas, the European Medicines Agency. The two regulatory authorities issued a coordinated report today restricting the use of the diabetes drug.
Here in the U.S., any patient currently on Avandia will have the option to change medications – more than likely to its primary competitor, Actos (pioglitazone). As for new patients, doctors can only prescribe them Avandia if they can prove that the patient cannot control his or her blood sugars with any other medications, including Actos.
Europe has taken an even stronger stance on the issue – recommending the European Commission remove the drug entirely from the market.
CHI Health Clinic has pulled all Avandia samples and prescription medications from its shelves, as have our pharmacies. Many of our physicians already noted the previous warnings regarding Avandia and proactively changed prescriptions for their patients months ago. Our clinics will be in touch soon with any patient who is still on the drug, in order to discuss alternative treatment options.
If you have questions about whether your diabetes medication – or any prescription, for that matter – is safe, you should call your doctor or consult with a pharmacist.