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Drug association encourages use of diabetes drug

Despite widely published fears that diabetes drug Lantus may boost the risk of cancer, the Food and Drug Administration has urged diabetes patients to continue using this medication.
Diabetes journal Diabetologia carried studies last week that linked Lantus, manufactured by Sanofi-Aventis, with an increased risk of various forms of cancer.
The FDA reported said on the issue: “the duration of patient follow-up in all four studies was shorter than what is generally considered necessary to evaluate for cancer risk from drug exposure. Further, inconsistencies in findings within and across individual studies raise concerns as to whether an association between the use of insulin glargine and cancer truly exists. Based on the currently available data, the FDA recommends that patients should not stop taking their insulin therapy without consulting a physician, since uncontrolled blood sugar levels can have both immediate and long-term serious adverse effects.”
The American Diabetes Association supported the decision with the following statement: “For patients using glargine and considering switching to another form of insulin, the data in these studies make it unclear as to whether any one type of insulin increases the risk of cancer more than other types of insulin. Patients concerned about these studies or their insulin regimen should talk to their doctor and should not stop taking their insulin on the basis of the findings reported here.”

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