A warning from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has linked pioglitazone (Actos), a thiazolidinedione prescribed for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, with an increased rate of arm, hand, and lower leg fractures among women. The action comes less than a month after a similar warning about excess fractures in women taking rosiglitazone (Avandia), another drug in the same class. The increased risk did not appear in men.
While the drugs remain on the market and continue to be valuable tools in physicians' therapeutic armamentarium against type 2 diabetes, investigators are striving to determine the mechanism of these effects and which patients are at increased risk.
Hampton T. Diabetes Drugs Tied to Fractures in Women. JAMA. 2007;297(15):1645. doi:10.1001/jama.297.15.1645