According to a recent lawsuit filed by a South Carolina state prosecutor, the British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline improperly marketed its diabetes drug, Avandia, to South Carolina consumers. The suit alleges that the drug manufacturer hid the medication’s harmful side effects and further claimed that, “GSK did not just fail to disclose the potential cardiovascular risks Avandia posed, which include heart attacks and sudden cardiac death, it affirmatively represented that Avandia could reduce diabetic’s cardiovascular risks.”
Avandia, which was approved by the FDA in 1999, is one of the top-selling diabetes pills in the entire world. However, the drug’s popularity took a hit in 2007, following reports from the New England Journal of Medicine which suggested use of the drug could increase the risk of heart attack and even death in patients.
Although GSK rolled out new labels for Avandia in February, regulators in Europe have pulled the drug off the market altogether, a move which will occur in the U.S. by November of this year.