Deaths linked to diabetes drug

Fri, 01 Jun 2007
According to Health Canada, the deaths of several Canadian people might be linked to the controversial diabetes drug Avandia. The drug is currently undergoing a major review following evidence that linked it to a significant risk of heart attack and death . The company who make Avandia, GlaxoSmithKline, have leapt to its defence. Health Canada statistics say 28 patients taking Avandia had heart attacks since 2000.

A spokesperson for Health Canada, Renee Bergerson, reportedly commented: "Our preliminary review indicates that there is a possible link between the drug and death in six cases."

Groups in Canada called for Avandia to be axed from prescription lists. The chair of PharmaWatch, Colleen Fuller, voiced sentiments that must be on many diabetic and healthcare staff minds: "These drugs are coming onto the market and being heavily promoted before there is some understanding of what their impact is going to be. It just makes me very, very angry that the government is now dragging its feet when there are alarm bells going on with this particular drug and they're still not doing anything."
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