Over the past several years, the popular type 2 diabetes drug Byetta (generic: exenatide) has been repeatedly linked to an increased risk for thyroid cancer, a rare disease that starts in the thyroid gland. This condition occurs when a malignant tumor invades tissues and spreads to distant parts of the body. Signs and symptoms of Byetta-induced thyroid cancer may include difficulty swallowing, hoarseness or changing voice, cough, and enlargement of the thyroid gland.
Free Byetta Thyroid Cancer Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one developed thyroid cancer or pancreatic cancer after taking Byetta, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit against the manufacturer of Byetta and we can help.
What’s the Problem with Byetta?
Federal health regulators say that Byetta, a widely-prescribed diabetes drug, may share the same thyroid cancer concerns of a similar medication from the same class. In a report released in April 2010, officials from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) reported that Novo Nordisk’s Victoza had been linked to thyroid cancer. Both Byetta and Victoza belong to a class of drugs known as GLP-1 analogs. The FDA report expressed concerns that all medications from this class may be linked to thyroid tumors based on tests conducted on rats and monkeys.
When the thyroid cancer concerns were first raised, drugmaker Amylin argued that since Victoza and Byetta are different molecules, there is no risk of the disease with Byetta. However, a subsequent statement from company officials following the FDA report conceded that cancer concerns cannot be ruled out as a side effect of Byetta. Therefore, strict label warnings may be necessary about the potential Byetta cancer risk to alert users about the possibility of thyroid tumors.
Byetta Thyroid Cancer Overview
Thyroid cancer is a rare disease that originates in the thyroid gland, an organ at the base of the throat that makes hormones which regulate heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature and weight. There are four separate and distinct types of Byetta thyroid cancer:
- Papillary Carcinoma – By far the most common variety of thyroid cancer, papillary carcinoma usually affects women of childbearing age. It spreads slowly and is the most treatable form of the disease.
- Medullary Carcinoma – Cancer of non-thyroid cells that are normally present in the thyroid gland. Medullary carcinoma tends to run in families, and has been conclusively linked with several types of specific genetic mutations. This type of the disease requires different methods of treatment than other kinds of thyroid cancer.
- Follicular Carcinoma – Having the highest recurrence rate of any type of thyroid cancer, follicular carcinoma accounts for about 10% of all cases. Mortality of the disease is highly related to the degree of vascular invasion.
- Anaplastic Carcinoma (also known as Giant and Spindle Cell Cancer) – By far the most dangerous form of thyroid cancer, anaplastic carcinoma is a rare form of the disease that spreads quickly and does not respond to radioiodine therapy.
Signs & Symptoms
In the early stages of development, Byetta thyroid cancer may not cause any symptoms at all. But as the disease progresses, it is more likely to cause a number of identifiable symptoms, which may include:
- a lump (nodule) in the neck
- difficulty speaking normally
- voice changes
- difficulty swallowing
- difficulty breathing
- pain in the neck or throat
- persistent or chronic cough not due to allergies or illness
You should contact your healthcare provider immediately if you have any of these Byetta thyroid cancer symptoms. Your doctor can order tests to determine whether you have thyroid cancer, and if so, which type. Treatment options vary depending on the variety of the disease and how far the cancer has spread. They include surgery, radioactive iodine, hormone treatment, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Some patients receive a combination of these treatments.
Do I Have a Byetta Thyroid Cancer Lawsuit?
The Product Liability & Defective Drug Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Byetta lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new Byetta thyroid cancer and Byetta pancreatic cancer cases in all 50 states.
Free Byetta Thyroid Cancer Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one developed thyroid cancer or pancreatic cancer after taking Byetta, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a Byetta thyroid cancer suit and we can help.