The controversial diabetes drug Avandia causes about 500 people to have preventable heart attacks each month, The New York Times reported. And if another drug were used by all the patients taking Avandia, an additional 300 people a month wouldn't develop heart failure, internal government documents obtained by the newspaper said.
The Times story said that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration linked Avandia to 304 deaths in the last three months of 2009. Avandia is made by GlaxoSmithKline. It is used to treat type 2 diabetes.
A bipartisan Senate investigation led by Sens. Max Baucus (D., Mont.) and Charles Grassley (R., Iowa) is expected to release its report on Avandia on Monday. That report – also obtained by The Times - criticizes GlaxoSmithKline for failing to warn patients sooner that Avandia was potentially deadly.