Avandia, a medication which is prescribed to treat type II diabetes, has been linked to an increased risk of heart attack, heart disease and death. Avandia, which has been on the market for over ten years, is used to control blood sugar levels. In May 2007, concerns were raised about Avandia’s safety. Initially, the concerns were related to heart disease, but more recent studies have suggested that in certain individuals, Avandia may also cause liver failure, bone fractures and blindness.
Currently, there is a movement to recall Avandia. A consumer protection group, Public Citizen, has petitioned the FDA to ban Avandia as a dangerous drug, because its risks outweigh its benefits and safer alternatives are available. Although it is unclear when the FDA will act on Public Citizen’s petition, the American Diabetes Association and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes are both advising against the use of Avandia. Even though the number of prescriptions for Avandia fell sharply after the dangers were revealed, over 4.5 million prescriptions for this dangerous drug were filled in the last year.