Heart side effects concerns and the possible recall of Avandia have led to a significant drop in sales of the popular diabetes drug.
Diabetes patient’s, doctors and researchers aren’t the only ones worried about the heart problems and other side effects caused by Avandia. Financial analysts describe Glaxo’s first-quarter report as “gloomy,” even though the drug company’s revenue was up 9% and earnings up 17%.
The Motley Fool reports that the gain was due largely to sales of pandemic vaccine and antiviral treatment Relenza. Swine flu and bird flu earnings are not expected to last more than a year. Then what?
Glaxo faces an FDA advisory panel in July that will address renewed call for an Avandia recall. Sales of the diabetes drug have dropped significantly over the past few years since it was reported that Avandia side effects include an increased risk of heart attack, congestive heart failure and stroke. It’s still a $1.2 billion-a-year treatment for diabetes and a recall would be “a big blow” to Glaxo.
Even if the FDA doesn’t recall Avandia, worries about the drug’s side effects could lead to the end of the TIDE trial, a clinical trial comparing Avandia and Takeda’s Actos. Whatever the result of the July FDA meeting, Avandia recall or not, the future of Glaxo’s diabetes drug is not very bright.