A medication used to treat diabetes could increase the risk of bladder cancer.
A common diabetes drug may raise the risk of developing bladder cancer, a study of British patients has found.
The anti-diabetic drug pioglitazone helps to control blood sugar levels in patients with type 2 diabetes.
But new research, published in The BMJ, has found that taking the drug is linked to a 63 per cent increased risk of bladder cancer.
Figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre show 1.18 million prescriptions for pioglitazone hydrochloride were dispensed in England in 2014.
“The results of this large population based study indicate that pioglitazone is associated with an increased risk of bladder cancer,” said lead author Dr Laurent Azoulay, Centre for Clinical Epidemiology, Lady Davis Institute, Jewish General Hospital, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
Researchers wanted to assess the drug after a number of bladder cancer cases were identified among people taking the drug in a trial in 2005. Since then different studies have reported contradictory findings on the subject.
They set out to compare pioglitazone to other anti-diabetic drugs.
Experts identified 145,806 patients from the UK Clinical Practice Research Database newly treated with anti-diabetic drugs between January 2000 – when pioglitazone and another medicine from the same class of drug called rosiglitazone first entered the UK market – and July 2013, with follow-up until July 2014.
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