Thank you to Close Concerns consultancy for accentuating this. Here's what that group had to say in their latest industry newsletter, released last week:
"There was, as you would expect, a lot of discussion about Avandia but not much consensus. In our discussions with CDEs, we heard mixed answers about whether Avandia is dead. Several mentioned Takeda [makers of rival drug Actos] favorably because it gives out a lot of samples with virtually no follow up. Few CDEs said that they would point-blank stop prescribing Avandia, but we sensed a lot of caution."
In fact, the only consensus seemed to be that "If you have two drugs that do the same thing and there's problems with one of them, then why would you use that one?" Right.
Prominent Harvard cardiologist Dr. Om Ganda, who addressed the Actos-vs.-Avandia cardiovascular risk issue, seemed to disappoint the audience with nothing but ambiguity: "it depends on data yet to come."
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Meanwhile the FDA expert panel ruling on July 30 clearly thought there was not enough evidence to take Avandia off the market at this time.
So what's the best thing for doctors and diabetes educators to do with Avandia now? "Remain careful" about giving it to patients with heart health problems, Dr. Ganda advised.
Now there's some solid advice. No wonder GlaxoSmithKline is hiding out.