Janumet (sitagliptin and metformin) is a drug produced by Merck & Co. Inc, used in the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes. It was approved for general use by the FDA in April 2007. Janumet controls Type 2 Diabetes symptoms using combination of Sitagliptin, which works by inhibiting the DPP-4 enzyme causing the pancreas to secrete extra insulin, and Metformin, which decreases the amount of glucose produced by the liver. It has been speculated that this combination of drugs may overstimulate the pancreas and therefore possibly be causing Pancreatic Cancer. Merck’s drug may also be linked to a painful autoimmune disorder called bullous pemphigoid, which causes large blisters across the body.
What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 Diabetes affects the body’s ability to regulate its blood sugar levels. The disease is characterized by high blood sugar, insulin resistance, and relative lack of insulin. Type 2 Diabetes is directly related to obesity and lack of exercise, though genetic factors may increase a person’s risk of developing the disease. Diagnosis rates have grown steadily in correlation with increased obesity rates. Treatment generally involves dietary changes, exercise as well as drug treatments including drugs like Janumet. As of 2015, approximately 392 million people have been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes.
Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms
Type 2 Diabetes can cause numerous other potentially deadly conditions so knowing how to spot symptoms is very important. Only a doctor can diagnose and treat Type 2 Diabetes. If you or a loved one has experienced any of the following symptoms, contact your physician immediately:
- Symptoms due to high blood sugar
- Increased thirst
- Increased hunger (especially after eating)
- Dry mouth
- Frequent urination
- Unexplained weight loss (even though you are eating and feel hungry)
- Fatigue (weak, tired feeling)
- Blurred vision
- Loss of consciousness (rare)
Other Symptoms include:
- Slow-healing sores or cuts
- Itching of the skin (usually around the vaginal or groin area)
- Frequent yeast infections
- Recent weight gain or unexplained weight loss
- Velvety dark skin changes of the neck, armpit, and groin, called acanthosis nigricans
- Numbness and tingling of the hands and feet
- Decreased vision
Janumet And Pancreatic Cancer
A number of publications have concluded that there may be an increased risk in developing Pancreatic Cancer while taking Janumet. Additional studies are ongoing.
Janumet & Bullous Pemphigoid
Recently, patients have reported that after taking the diabetes drug Janumet, they were diagnosed with the autoimmune disease bullous pemphigoid. Bullous pemphigoid presents as large, difficult to rupture, blisters across the body. It is common for these blisters to present on the lower abdomen, groin, upper thighs and arms, often hidden creases or folds in the skin, and are almost always described as “painful” and “itchy”. It is not known exactly why Janumet might cause the development of the disease, however reports have attributed multiple cases to the Type 2 Diabetes drug.