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Two clinical trials of Type2 diabetics taking Johnson & Johnson’s diabetes drug, Invokana, also known also as canagliflozin, have revealed that users are twice as likely to suffer foot and leg amputa­tions than those given a placebo. The U.S. Food and Drug Admin­is­tration is requiring Johnson & Johnson to add new warnings about the risk of foot and leg amputa­tions to Invokana.

Invokana is a type of relatively new class of Type2 diabetes drugs called SGLT-2 inhibitors. These drugs remove excess blood sugar through the urine. It is not known yet what effect this will have on kidneys. The body naturally removes excess blood sugar through the urine- referred to as “spilling sugar.” This is known to cause compli­ca­tions. What is known is that it is better to prevent high blood sugar levels, rather than to compensate for them by spilling sugar in the urine. Others in this class of SGLT-2 inhibitors include Jardiance (Eli Lilly & Co.) and Farxiga (AstraZeneca Plc.)

FDA Warning