Popular Statin Drug Lipitor Linked to Increase in Diabetes, New Litigation

By Rheingold Giuffra Ruffo & Plotkin LLP

By; Kelda Doherty

In 2012, results of a study carried out by the University of Massachusetts Medical School, revealed that ‘Liptor’, manufactured and sold by Pfizer since 1996, is linked to an increase in the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes among postmenopausal women. This brings back memories of our litigation, lawsuits, and settlements for Zyprexa, an Eli Lilly anti-psychotic which caused significant weight gain and diabetes.

This statin drug, used to treat high cholesterol, is currently one of the best selling statin drugs on the market, grossing $125 billion in sales. Currently, over twenty million Americans suffer from diabetes, with 95 % of those dealing with Type 2 of the disease. The disease is caused by a lack of the hormone ‘insulin’ being produced or resistance to the hormone in the body resulting in the body’s inability to control blood sugar levels.

The study which focused on post menopausal women with an average age of 63 found that they are exposed to a 46% increased risk of developing the disease if using statin type drugs such as Liptor. An increased risk to those females with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of less than 25 was also found. A European study carried out by St. George’s University of London also discovered a 12% increased risk of Type 2 Diabetes when patients were exposed to high doses of the drug. For every 498 participants one extra case of diabetes arose.

This newly discovered increased health risk is in addition to existing potential side effects of the drug Liptor which include irreparable damage to nerves, tendons, risk of heart attack, liver dysfunction, cognitive damage, myopathy, and rhabdomyolysis.

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