The U.S. Food & Drug Administration announced in late May that unacceptable levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) had been found in metformin, the drug commonly used by consumers with diabetes to control blood sugar. Now, at least five drug makers have voluntarily recalled their metformin products as a result.
The pharmaceutical companies that have recalled metformin include:
- Amneal Pharmaceuticals, which recalled all lots of metformin hydrochloride extended-release tablets
- Apotex, which recalled all lots of metformin extended-release tablets
- Lupin Pharmaceuticals, which recalled one lot of its metformin hydrochloride extended-release tablets
- Marksans Pharma Limited, which recalled one lot of its extended-release metformin tablets
- Teva Pharmaceuticals, which recalled 14 lots of its metformin hydrochloride extended-release tablets, including 500 mg and 750 mg bottles
NDMA is typically ingested in small quantities, but cancer risk may increase due to long-term exposure to greater quantities. The probable carcinogen has recently been found in other popular medications like Zantac, or ranitidine, a popular heartburn medication. The acceptable daily intake limit of NDMA is 96 nanograms per day, according to the FDA. NDMA is an environmental contaminant that is also found in meats, dairy products, and vegetables.
What is Metformin?
Metformin is an oral diabetes medicine that is used with diet and exercise to improve blood sugar control in individuals who have type 2 diabetes. Though it’s sometimes used together with other medications and insulin, it’s not used to treat type 1 diabetes. The drug works by restoring the body’s proper response to the insulin it naturally produces, as well as decreases the amount of sugar your liver makes and that your stomach and intestines absorb.
Do I Need to See a Doctor?
If you have been taking metformin to treat your diabetes, it’s important to seek the medical opinion of your professional before you stop taking the medication. Quitting your medication completely can result in dangerous side effects – a doctor can assess your condition and determine how to wean you off metformin and onto an alternative drug.
Though there haven’t been reports of cancer due to metformin yet, it’s important to be aware of the symptoms of overexposure to NDMA so you can seek medical attention when you identify them. Health effects associated with NDMA exposure include nausea, fever, vomiting, dizziness, abdominal cramps, and jaundice. High NDMA levels can also reduce kidney and lung function over time.
Skilled Litigators on the Side of Consumers
At Bertram & Graf, L.L.C., our team is committed to serving individuals and families in our community and beyond who have been harmed by dangerous drugs and medications. Patients trust prescribed drugs to improve their various afflictions, not worsen their overall health. Through free consultations and working on a contingency fee basis, our attorneys strive to be as accessible to those in need as possible. We’re not afraid to go up against large and powerful pharmaceutical companies and hold them responsible for negligence. We’ve successfully defended clients harmed by drugs including Accutane, Fen-Phen, Yaz, Taxotere, Topamax, Talcum, Beincar, and more.
Call Bertram & Graf, L.L.C. today at (888) 398-2277, or contact us online for a free consultation if you’ve been injured or have fallen ill as a result of using a defective drug. Our product liability attorneys have represented clients across the country who have been harmed by dangerous drugs.