Diabetes drug under question

Thu, 19 Oct 2006
A diabetes drug prescribed throughout the world might not be producing the results expected of it. A recent review indicates that for type 2 diabetes patients the drug, known as pioglitazone (Actos), might not be having any benefit.

The researchers who published the review used a wide source of data . They analysed results of 22 different clinical trials with 6,200 patients taking pioglitazone. The aim of this type of drug is to make the body use its own resources better, prompting more efficient glucose regulation.

Unfortunately for manufacturers of the drug, the results were not positive. Apparently, the drug has no positive effects on the patients surveyed and may even increase levels of edema and heart failure. Apparently, the benefits of the drug remain unclear.

One expert, John Buse, reportedly said: "The kernel from this review is that pioglitazone is effective in glucose-lowering, has some other beneficial and potentially harmful associated features, and just has not been evaluated in the right way to prove that it will help people lead longer and more productive lives. This is true for essentially every drug available for the treatment of diabetes. I am fairly certain that we are better off with pioglitazone than without it."

Before the drug can be entirely discarded, more research is needed.
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