The Food and Drug Administration has just strengthened its warning on certain medications prescribed for people with type 2 diabetes. Canagliflozin and dapagliflozin are sold under the brand names Invokana and Farxiga (pronounced FARSEEGA). Invokamet contains canagliflozin in combination with metformin, while Xigduo XR contains both dapagliflozin and metformin.
What Is Risky about Invokana and Farxiga?
The FDA is warning that these drugs are linked to acute kidney injury. Patients have been hospitalized with kidney damage. Some landed in intensive care; others required dialysis and four patients have died. Decreased urine or swelling in the legs and feet might signal kidney trouble. People taking Invokana and Farxiga should bring such symptoms to medical attention promptly.
Conditions That Exacerbate the Risk:
The agency warns that certain conditions may make a patient more vulnerable to kidney damage. These include chronic kidney problems, congestive heart failure and too little blood in the system from dehydration or blood loss.
In addition, a number of drugs may interact with these diabetes medicines to increase the risk. They include diuretics, ARBs and ACE inhibitors used to treat hypertension as well as NSAIDs such as diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB), meloxicam (Mobic) or naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn) for pain.
Since this warning is relatively new, doctors may not yet be fully aware of it. Patients taking Invokana and Farxiga might wish to bring it to their health care providers’ attention.