Metformin drug recalled for possible links to cancer

Nearly 120 million patients worldwide have been prescribed Metformin, a drug meant to manage diabetes. Nearly 80 million of those patients live in the United States alone, and this drug has now been recalled for contamination that can lead to bladder cancer.

prescription medication

Although the FDA has only approved Metformin for the treatment of type-2 diabetes, doctors have been prescribing this drug for a myriad of health issues.

What else has Metformin been prescribed for?

  • Patients with prediabetes
  • Pregnant women with gestational diabetes
  • Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
  • Women with fertility issues
  • Patients who gain weight while on antipsychotic medications

This has created risk for a greater percent of the population. However, not all Metformin has been recalled. Unacceptable amounts of carcinogens were found in the extended release version of the drug, and the recall has targeted five pharmaceutical companies specifically. The contaminant has been identified as N-Nitrosodimethylamine, or NDMA, and it has been linked to a variety of cancers.

What other types of cancer is NDMA linked to?

Although bladder cancer appears to be the main concern as a potential side effect from Metformin, this carcinogen has also been linked to:

  • Liver cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Intestinal cancer (small and large)
  • Colorectal cancer (colon cancer and rectum cancer)
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Prostate cancer
  • Testicular cancer
  • Ovarian cancer

What are next steps?

The FDA’s investigation and testing has been ongoing, but if you have been exposed to the Metformin named in the recall, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor as soon as possible. If you believe that you have become ill as a result of Metformin, an experienced attorney can help answer your questions. Call Allen & Allen today, at 866-772-1384.