Using Invokana to Control Type 2 Diabetes

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 30 million people in the United States suffer from diabetes, and another 84 million have prediabetes, a condition which often leads to type 2 diabetes within five years if it is not treated.

Many patients who have type 2 diabetes are unable to control the disease without some type of medication. Over the past few years, one of the more popular types of diabetes medicines prescribed is SGLT2 inhibitors, which have been found to significantly lower a patient’s blood sugar.

In March 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new drug application submitted by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. The approved drug was an SGLT2 inhibitor called canagliflozin, which Janssen marketed under the trade name Invokana.

Following its approval, subsequent clinical trials, as well as an investigation by the FDA, led to the agency issuing a black box warning regarding the potentially dangerous risks patients face when taking the drug, including lower limb amputations and acute kidney injury. If you have suffered complications as a result of using Invokana to control type 2 diabetes, work with a qualified Invokana lawyer that could hold those responsible accountable.

When Is Invokana Prescribed?

There are certain symptoms a patient may exhibit which may result in their doctor prescribing Invokana. Some of the more common include fatigue, increased thirst, blurred vision, and increased hunger. These are all consistent symptoms of blood sugar issues.

Invokana should only be prescribed to adult patients, between the ages of 18 and 65, who have a confirmed diagnosis of type 2 diabetes. Patients who are pregnant or who are suffering from severe renal impairment or stage renal disease, or who are currently on dialysis, should not be using Invokana to control type 2 diabetes.

It is important to note that Invokana is often prescribed for weight loss. This is not an approved use by the FDA, although it is a profitable one for the manufacturer.

When Should Invokana Not Be Taken?

Because of the potential risks associated with the drug, a complete assessment of the patient’s renal function should be completed before prescribing the medication. Doctors should also consider the physical condition and the patient’s history to determine what level of risk Invokana could pose.

Specifically, the doctor should confirm whether any of the following medical issues are present in the patient’s history:

  • Lower limb amputations
  • Ketoacidosis
  • Hypotension
  • Acute kidney impairment
  • Hyperkalemia
  • General Mycotic infections
  • Increased LDL
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Drug interactions
  • Pregnancy

Symptoms to Watch for

If a patient exhibits or complains of any of the following symptoms, this could be an indicator that they are having an adverse reaction to the drug:

  • Changes in blood panels or blood pressure
  • Constipation or increased urination
  • Sudden fatigue, weakness, or weight loss
  • Hypersensitivity reactions or skin sensitivity to sunlight
  • Unexplained nausea, thirst, or ulcers
  • Vaginal itching or yeast infections

Value of Working With an Invokana Lawyer

If you have been using Invokana to control type 2 diabetes and have suffered complications, it is important to seek the counsel of an experienced Invokana lawyer. Your attorney could examine your medical records, collect bills and other documentation, and use all of that information to begin building your mass torts claim. Work with a skilled dangerous drugs lawyer that could devote the time and resources necessary to achieve a positive outcome for you.