Lipitor and Diabetes Risk for Women
The lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are pursuing Lipitor lawsuits over Pfizer’s failure to adequately warn about the diabetes risk associated with their blockbuster cholesterol drug.
At this time, claims primarily involve healthy women diagnosed with diabetes on Lipitor, with a BMI under 30, as there are serious questions about the effectiveness of the drug for women with a health body weight. If adequate information about the Lipitor diabetes risks had been provided, few such users would have elected to take Lipitor, and it appears that the potential benefits do not outweigh the risks.
Lipitor (atorvastatin) is one of the most widely used medications in the world, generating billions of dollars in sales amid aggressive promotion by Pfizer, who has marketed the drug as a safe and effective prescription to lower cholesterol and help prevent the risk of developing heart disease.
Are You a Woman Diagnosed with Diabetes After Using Lipitor?
Most women using Lipitor agree to take the medication to promote a health lifestyle and they rely on representations made by Pfizer that Lipitor is safe and effective.
In recent years, a growing body of scientific research and studies have suggested that Lipitor actually is not safe or particularly effective for women with healthy BMI, due to the link between Lipitor and diabetes.
In February 2012, the FDA announced that new warning labels would be added about the risk of diabetes with Lipitor and other statins.
The FDA based these new warnings on information from a number of studies that have been available to Pfizer for years, suggesting that side effects of Lipitor increase levels of blood surgars, resulting in an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine in January 2012 specifically focused on the diabetes risk for women using Lipitor and other other statins.
Researchers looked at data on more than 160,000 women who participated in the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) between 1993 and 2005. Among women between the ages of 50 and 79, researchers found that 9.9% of women using Lipitor and other statins developed diabetes within nine years. This represented more than a 1/3rd increase in the risk of diabetes when compared to women not using Lipitor or another statin.
Several reports and studies have also raised concerns about the effectiveness of Lipitor, highlighting how Pfizer was able to build a widely used blockbuster medication by failing to warn about the Lipitor diabetes risk, especially for women.
According to a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine in February 2013, researchers highlighted how most doctors prescribe Lipitor and other statin cholesterol drugs to patients who have very low odds of actually developing heart disease. Based on responses to a survey sent to hundreds of doctors involving six fictitious patients, researchers indicated that 70% of those who responded indicated that they would have recommended Lipitor or another statin to patients that do not fit the profile of those who need them.
In comments made in a Reuter’s report issued at the time this study was published, researchers pointed out how misleading information provided in direct-to-consumer advertisements likely influence the rate of prescriptions for Lipitor and other statins. Many physicians report that they are under pressure from patients who see a television ad, and believe they need Lipitor or another medication to maintain their healthy lifestyle as they age.
As a result of aggressive promotion and withholding information about the risk of diabetes with Lipitor use by women, Pfizer generated more than $125 billion in sales before the medication became available as a generic in 2011.
Lipitor Diabetes Lawsuits for Women with Healthy BMI
Lipitor diabetes lawsuits are focused at this time on women with a low BMI, as it seems that this group receives no benefit from the medication.
BMI, or body mass index, is a formula for measuring health weight based off an individual’s weight in comparison to their health. A BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered normal weight and a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight. However, any BMI over 30 is considered obese.
Serious questions exist about the benefits of using Lipitor for women with a BMI under 30, especially in light of the increased diabetes risk which can severely impact their overall health, putting them at an increased risk for blindness, neuropathy, kidney disease and the heart disease they were actually trying to avoid.
A study published this month in BioMed Central’s journal BMC Medicine evaluated the risk of heart disease among women, finding that the risk of coronary heart disease increases with BMI, as well as age.
The Lipitor diabetes lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are providing free consultations and claim evaluations for women diagnosed with diabetes after using the popular drug. As a result of Pfizer’s decision to place their desire for profits before the safety of women using Lipitor, financial compensation may be available.
To review a potential diabetes lawsuit for yourself, a friend or family member, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.