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Date posted: 9/5/2013

While the FDA and drug researchers continue to disagree over whether diabetes drugs like Januvia need added warning labels for pancreatic cancer risks, the court system is moving forward to help those injured.

Last week, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation ordered that cases alleging pancreatic cancer from drugs like Januvia, Janumet and Byetta will be consolidated to a special multidistrict litigation court in Southern California.

This gives victims some closure on the legal process and an idea of how cases will be handled, as the number of those affected continues to rise. In an MDL, cases are kept independent, but can share the resources of a combined litigation effort.

The cases center around Merck’s failure to properly warn patients that their diabetes medications may be linked to serious diseases like pancreatic cancer or thyroid cancer.

Questions first arose over Januvia cancer in 2011, when a UCLA study discovered subjects given the medication had significantly higher cancer rates, specifically pancreatic cancer and thyroid cancer.

Other health experts have joined the cause this year. In February, the American Medical Association warned that Januvia and similar drugs could double the risk for pancreatitis, a major risk factor for pancreatic cancer. The American Diabetes Association and British Medical Journal have also called for new safety tests to identify cancer risks.

Despite all this, the FDA says it will not issue a Januvia warning without further evidence.

So far, nearly 100 patients have filed a Januvia lawsuit or similar action after being diagnosed with cancer. With litigation growing, an MDL court will give those injured the most efficient legal process and best chance for recovery. However, due to the complexity of these cases, DrugRisk only recommends experienced lawyers who have already handled a Januvia lawsuit.

If you or a loved one were diagnosed with pancreatic cancer or thyroid cancer after taking Januvia or Janumet, it is important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible.

Contact us today for more information on the research, side effects and litigation news related to Januvia, or to speak with a lawyer.