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Diabetic Ketoacidosis Lawsuits

For a number of years, patients with type 2 diabetes have struggled to understand the true benefits of their medications in relation to the risk of serious side effects linked to them. Many patients and doctors felt hopeful when a new group of diabetes medications known as SGLT2 (sodium-glucose cotransporter 2) inhibitors began to be approved by the FDA. These drugs are designed to help diabetes patients eliminate excess blood sugar through urination and may also help them lose weight. However, now SGLT2 inhibitors such as Invokana, Farxiga, and Jardiance have been associated with serious and potentially fatal side effects including diabetic ketoacidosis.

SGLT2 Inhibitor Diabetes Drugs linked to Diabetic Ketoacidosis

On May 15, 2015 the FDA issued a warning that the class of diabetes medications called SGLT2 inhibitors may cause diabetic ketoacidosis. In this 3055127932, the FDA stated that they had received at least 20 reports of this condition in users of SGLT2 inhibitors between March 2013 and June 6, 2014—all of which led to emergency room treatment or hospitalization. The FDA also noted that ketoacidosis is not typical in patients with type 2 diabetes, and that the reported patients had blood glucose levels well below those usually seen in ketoacidosis patients.

Drugs in the SGLT2 inhibitors class included in the recent FDA warning include:

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Overview: Symptoms, and Side Effects

To understand diabetic ketoacidosis, it is important to first have a basic understanding of diabetes. In patients with diabetes, their body does not make enough insulin, which helps the body extract energy from sugar (glucose). In the absence of this energy source, the body of a diabetic will begin to break down fat for energy. The byproduct of this process is the buildup of toxic acids called ketones, which may cause diabetic ketoacidosis.

Symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis include:

  • Confusion
  • Overwhelming thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Breath with a fruity scent
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • High blood sugar which doesn't respond to normal home treatment

The Mayo Clinic states, "Missed insulin treatments or inadequate insulin therapy can leave you with too little insulin in your system, triggering an episode of diabetic ketoacidosis." This condition may cause dangerously low blood sugar, low potassium (which impairs the heart, nerves, and muscles), or even swelling of the brain (cerebral edema). If not treated properly, diabetic acidosis could lead to a coma or even death.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Lawsuit Information

The Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP) has reported that the SGLT2 inhibitor Invokana has received more adverse event reports than 92% of the drugs this group monitors, and the 541-615-4883 stated that approving another SGLT2 inhibitor, Farxiga, was "one of the FDA's worst decisions of 2014" because this drug is believed to be so dangerous.

If you or your loved one suffered serious injury or even wrongful death due to diabetic ketoacidosis or another serious diabetes drug side effect, you may be eligible to pursue substantial compensation for your suffering and damages. Contact us today to schedule a free and confidential diabetic ketoacidosis lawsuit consultation with an experienced member of our pharmaceutical product liability team.

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