Type-2 Diabetes Medication: Onglyza and its Link to Increased Risk of Heart Failure

Mar 12, 2021
  • The legal team at Boesen Law is investigating claims regarding Onglyza linked to increased risk of heart failure.

    What is Onglyza?

    Onglyza is a medication approved by the FDA in 2009 with the purpose of treating Type-2 diabetes. According to the official website for Onglyza, it is also “..proven to lower A1C levels”. This was established through a 24-week clinical study involving adult patients with Type-2 diabetes who reported that their blood sugar was not controlled enough by taking Metformin IR (Immediate Release) alone. The study had a total of 743 adults where more than half were given Onglyza plus Metformin IR. After the study term of 24 weeks was over, the results stated that those who took Onglyza and Metformin IR saw significant A1C reductions versus those who took a placebo and Metformin IR. However, though there was only one test study conducted, individual results may vary.

    How does Onglyza work?

    Onglyza increases incretin levels (incretin is a hormone that stimulates insulin secretion in response to meals) which helps release insulin. The released insulin will help control blood sugar levels. According to the Onglyza website, there are claims that the medication may lower morning blood sugar.

    Blood sugar can rise while someone is sleeping due to the pancreas releasing too much glucagon ( a hormone involved in controlling blood sugar levels) which in turn, makes the liver release too much sugar. By taking Onglyza, it will reduce the amount of sugar released throughout the night causing lower blood sugar numbers in the morning.

    The official website also claims that Onglyza may lower after-meal spikes which occur when the pancreas doesn’t release enough insulin or the body is not using insulin properly. By taking the medication, it may lower spikes by helping the body increase the levels of insulin after mealtime.

    Who may have been prescribed Onglyza?

    Onglyza was prescribed to adult patients 18 years and older with Type-2 diabetes. The medication was used alone (if recommended by your doctor) or with insulin/ other antidiabetic medicines.

    What is causing the increased risk of heart failure while taking Onglyza?

    Studies show that the main ingredient in Onglyza, saxagliptin, is causing an increase in heart failure. Saxagliptin is a class of medication called “dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors” or DPP-4.

    What if I am experiencing any heart failure symptoms?

    If you have any symptoms of heart failure like increased shortness of breath/ trouble breathing especially when lying down, unusual increase in weight, swelling/fluid retention (feed, ankles, or legs), or unusual tiredness/fatigue please call your doctor! If it is an emergency, please stop and call 911 immediately.

    What are the side effects?

    Like most medications, there is a list of negative side effects which include:

    • Shortness of breath
    • Tiredness and lethargy
    • Increased hunger
    • Shakiness
    • Sweating
    • Headaches
    • Rapid heartbeat
    • Vision changes

    These are just a few of the side effects described in the pamphlet we received. After more research on the official website for the medication, one can see that there are even more negative side effects. One of the more concerning side effects is inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) and the most alarming一 heart failure.

    It is said that the side effects were already existing when the drug was approved more than 10 years ago by the FDA. The manufacturer did not warn any of their patients about the effects until 2016. Here we have added the major risks detailed in the pamphlet.

    Major risks:

    • Increased risk of heart failure
    • Low blood sugar
    • Joint pain
    • Pancreatitis

    Some of the major risks seem pretty trivial; however, one should know that these major risks have landed people that have taken Onglyza in the hospital. These risks can be major life-altering events and at Boesen Law, we aim to keep everyone safe.

    If you believe you, or someone you know, have been affected by Onglyza and have been sick, contact the Boesen law offices as soon as possible. Our consultations are always free of charge and we strive to get each person the help they need and deserve. Our number one priority is your health and safety. Please call us at .

    Information gathered by the following links: