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Invokana FDA Alerts

The FDA Alert(s) below may be specifically about Invokana or relate to a group or class of drugs which include Invokana (canagliflozin).

MedWatch Safety Alerts are distributed by the FDA and published by Drugs.com. Following is a list of possible medication recalls, market withdrawals, alerts and warnings. For the latest FDA MedWatch alerts, go here.

Recent FDA Alert(s) for canagliflozin

SGLT2 (sodium-glucose cotransporter-2) Inhibitors for Diabetes: Drug Safety Communication - Regarding Rare Occurrences of a Serious Infection of the Genital Area

Aug 29, 2018

Audience: Patient, Endocrinology, Health Professional, Pharmacy

ISSUE: FDA is warning that cases of a rare but serious infection of the genitals and area around the genitals have been reported with the class of type 2 diabetes medicines called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. This serious rare infection, called necrotizing fasciitis of the perineum, is also referred to as Fournier’s gangrene. We are requiring a new warning about this risk to be added to the prescribing information of all SGLT2 inhibitors and to the patient Medication Guide.

BACKGROUND: SGLT2 inhibitors are FDA-approved for use with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. SGLT2 inhibitors lower blood sugar by causing the kidneys to remove sugar from the body through the urine. First approved in 2013, medicines in the SGLT2 inhibitor class include canagliflozin, dapagliflozin, empagliflozin, and ertugliflozin (see FDA-Approved SGLT2 Inhibitors). In addition, empagliflozin is approved to lower the risk of death from heart attack and stroke in adults with type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Untreated, type 2 diabetes can lead to serious problems, including blindness, nerve and kidney damage, and heart disease.

RECOMMENDATION: To read all of the recommendations see the Drug Safety Communication. 

Patients should:

  • Seek medical attention immediately if you experience any symptoms of tenderness, redness, or swelling of the genitals or the area from the genitals back to the rectum, and have a fever above 100.4 F or a general feeling of being unwell. These symptoms can worsen quickly, so it is important to seek treatment right away.

  • Read the patient Medication Guide every time you receive a prescription for an SGLT2 inhibitor because there may be new or important additional information about your drug. The Medication Guide explains the benefits and risks associated with the medicine

Health care professionals should:

  • Assess patients for Fournier’s gangrene if they present with the symptoms described above. If suspected, start treatment immediately with broad-spectrum antibiotics and surgical debridement if necessary.

  • Discontinue the SGLT2 inhibitor, closely monitor blood glucose levels, and provide appropriate alternative therapy for glycemic control.

Health care professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[08/29/2018 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]
 

Canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet): Drug Safety Communication - Increased Risk of Leg and Foot Amputations

May 16, 2017

Audience: Internal Medicine, Family Practice, Pharmacy, Patient

ISSUE: Based on new data from two large clinical trials, the FDA has concluded that the type 2 diabetes medicine canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet, Invokamet XR) causes an increased risk of leg and foot amputations. FDA is requiring new warnings, including the most prominent Boxed Warning, to be added to the canagliflozin drug labels to describe this risk.

Final results from two clinical trials – the CANVAS (Canagliflozin Cardiovascular Assessment Study) and CANVAS-R (A Study of the Effects of Canagliflozin on Renal Endpoints in Adult Participants With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus) – showed that leg and foot amputations occurred about twice as often in patients treated with canagliflozin compared to patients treated with placebo, which is an inactive treatment. Amputations of the toe and middle of the foot were the most common; however, amputations involving the leg, below and above the knee, also occurred. Some patients had more than one amputation, some involving both limbs. See the FDA Drug Safety Communication for additional information, including a data summary.

BACKGROUND: This information is an update to the May 18, 2016 MedWatch safety alert. Canagliflozin is a prescription medicine used with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. It belongs to a class of drugs called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Canagliflozin lowers blood sugar by causing the kidneys to remove sugar from the body through the urine. It is available as a single-ingredient product under the brand name Invokana and also in combination with the diabetes medicine metformin under the brand name Invokamet.

RECOMMENDATION: Patients taking canagliflozin should notify your health care professionals right away if you develop new pain or tenderness, sores or ulcers, or infections in your legs or feet. Talk to your health care professional if you have questions or concerns. Do not stop taking your diabetes medicine without first talking to your health care professional.

Health care professionals should, before starting canagliflozin, consider factors that may predispose patients to the need for amputations. These factors include a history of prior amputation, peripheral vascular disease, neuropathy, and diabetic foot ulcers. Monitor patients receiving canagliflozin for the signs and symptoms described above and discontinue canagliflozin if these complications occur.

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[05/08/2017 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]

Canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet) and Dapagliflozin (Farxiga, Xigduo XR): Drug Safety Communication - Strengthened Kidney Warnings

Jun 14, 2016

Audience: Endocrinology, Internal Medicine, Nephrology, Pharmacy

ISSUE: FDA has strengthened the existing warning about the risk of acute kidney injury for the type 2 diabetes medicines canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet) and dapagliflozin (Farxiga, Xigduo XR).  Based on recent reports, we have revised the warnings in the drug labels to include information about acute kidney injury and added recommendations to minimize this risk.

BACKGROUND: Canagliflozin and dapagliflozin are prescription medicines used with diet and exercise to help lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes.  They belong to a class of drugs called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors.  Canagliflozin and dapagliflozin lower blood sugar by causing the kidneys to remove sugar from the body through the urine.

From March 2013, when canagliflozin was approved, to October 2015, FDA received reports of 101 confirmable cases* of acute kidney injury, some requiring hospitalization and dialysis, with canagliflozin or dapagliflozin use (see Drug Safety Communication for the Data Summary).  This number includes only reports submitted to FDA, so there are likely additional cases about which we are unaware. 

RECOMMENDATION: Health care professionals should consider factors that may predispose patients to acute kidney injury prior to starting them on canagliflozin or dapagliflozin.  These include decreased blood volume; chronic kidney insufficiency; congestive heart failure; and taking other medications such as diuretics, blood pressure medicines called angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).  Assess kidney function prior to starting canagliflozin or dapagliflozin and monitor periodically thereafter.  If acute kidney injury occurs, promptly discontinue the drug and treat the kidney impairment. 

Patients should seek medical attention immediately if they experience signs and symptoms of acute kidney injury. This is a serious condition in which the kidneys suddenly stop working, causing dangerous levels of wastes to build up in the body.  Signs and symptoms of acute kidney injury may include decreased urine or swelling in the legs or feet.  Patients should not stop taking their medicine without first talking to their health care professionals.  Doing so can lead to uncontrolled blood sugar levels that can be harmful.  Read the patient Medication Guide you receive with your canagliflozin or dapagliflozin prescriptions.  It explains the benefits and risks associated with the medicine. 

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[06/14/2016 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]

Previous Alert:
[05/18/2016 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]

Canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet): Drug Safety Communication - Clinical Trial Results Find Increased Risk of Leg and Foot Amputations

May 18, 2016

Audience: Internal Medicine, Family Practice, Pharmacy, Patient

ISSUE: FDA is alerting the public about interim safety results from an ongoing clinical trial that found an increase in leg and foot amputations, mostly affecting the toes, in patients treated with the diabetes medicine canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet). FDA has not determined whether canagliflozin increases the risk of leg and foot amputations. FDA is currently investigating this new safety issue and will update the public when we have more information.

See the FDA Drug Safety Communication for additional details regarding the ongoing Canagliflozin Cardiovascular Assessment Study (CANVAS) clinical trial.

BACKGROUND: Canagliflozin is a prescription medicine used with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. It belongs to a class of drugs called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Canagliflozin lowers blood sugar by causing the kidneys to remove sugar from the body through the urine. It is available as a single-ingredient product under the brand name Invokana and also in combination with the diabetes medicine metformin under the brand name Invokamet.

RECOMMENDATION: Health care professionals should follow the recommendations in the canagliflozin drug labels. Monitor patients for the signs and symptoms described above and advise patients to seek medical advice if they experience them.

Patients should not stop or change their diabetes medicines without first talking to their health care professional. Doing so can lead to uncontrolled blood sugar levels that can be harmful. Over time, this can cause serious problems, including blindness, nerve and kidney damage, and heart disease. Patients taking canaglifozin should notify their health care professionals right away if they notice any new pain or tenderness, sores or ulcers, or infections in their legs or feet.

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[05/18/2016 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]
 

Invokana and Invokamet (canagliflozin): Drug Safety Communication - New Information on Bone Fracture Risk and Decreased Bone Mineral Density

Sep 10, 2015

Audience: Endocrinology, Nursing, Family Practice

ISSUE: FDA has strengthened the warning for the type 2 diabetes medicine canagliflozin (Invokana, Invokamet) related to the increased risk of bone fractures, and added new information about decreased bone mineral density. To address these safety concerns, FDA added a new WARNING AND PRECAUTION and revised the ADVERSE REACTIONS section of the Invokana and Invokamet drug labels.

FDA is continuing to evaluate the risk of bone fractures with other drugs in the SGLT2 inhibitor class, including dapagliflozin (Farxiga, Xigduo XR) and empaglifozin (Jardiance, Glyxambi, Synjardy), to determine if additional label changes or studies are needed. Health care professionals and patients are urged to report side effects involving canagliflozin or other SGLT2 inhibitors to the FDA MedWatch program.

BACKGROUND: Canagliflozin is a prescription medicine used with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. It belongs to a class of drugs called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. Canagliflozin is available as a single-ingredient product under the brand name Invokana and also in combination with the diabetes medicine metformin under the brand name Invokamet. Bone mineral density relates to the strength of a person’s bones.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Health care professionals should consider factors that contribute to fracture risk prior to starting patients on canagliflozin. Patients should talk to their health care professionals about factors that may increase their risk for bone fracture. Patients should not stop or change their diabetes medicines without first talking to their health care professional. Additional information for Health Care Professionals:

  • Bone fractures have been seen in patients taking the type 2 diabetes medicine canagliflozin. 
  • Fractures can occur as early as 12 weeks after starting canagliflozin.
  • Canagliflozin has also been linked to decreases in bone mineral density at the hip and lower spine. 
  • Consider factors that contribute to fracture risk prior to initiating canagliflozin.
  • Counsel patients about factors that may contribute to bone fracture risk.

Additional information for Patients:

Do not stop or change your diabetes medicines without first talking to your health care professional. When untreated, diabetes can lead to serious problems, including blindness, nerve and kidney damage, and heart disease. 

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[09/10/2015 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]
 

SGLT2 inhibitors: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Warns Medicines May Result in a Serious Condition of Too Much Acid in the Blood

May 15, 2015

Audience: Endocrinology, Family Practice

ISSUE: FDA is warning that the type 2 diabetes medicines canagliflozin, dapagliflozin, and empagliflozin may lead to ketoacidosis, a serious condition where the body produces high levels of blood acids called ketones that may require hospitalization. FDA is continuing to investigate this safety issue and will determine whether changes are needed in the prescribing information for this class of drugs, called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors.

BACKGROUND: SGLT2 inhibitors are a class of prescription medicines that are FDA-approved for use with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. When untreated, type 2 diabetes can lead to serious problems, including blindness, nerve and kidney damage, and heart disease. SGLT2 inhibitors lower blood sugar by causing the kidneys to remove sugar from the body through the urine.

These medicines are available as single-ingredient products and also in combination with other diabetes medicines such as metformin.

RECOMMENDATION: Patients should pay close attention for any signs of ketoacidosis and seek medical attention immediately if they experience symptoms such as difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, confusion, and unusual fatigue or sleepiness. Do not stop or change  your diabetes medicines without first talking to your prescriber.

Health care professionals should evaluate for the presence of acidosis, including ketoacidosis, in patients experiencing these signs or symptoms; discontinue SGLT2 inhibitors if acidosis is confirmed; and take appropriate measures to correct the acidosis and monitor sugar levels. See the FDA Drug Safety Communication for more information.

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:

[05/15/2015 - Drug Safety Communication - FDA]

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