The US Food and Drug Administration has issued a serious warning about a group of type 2 diabetes drug called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors. They reported that between March of 2013 and May 2018, there were twelve cases, that they are aware of, of Fournier’s gangrene in people that were taking an SGLT2 inhibitor. The number might be higher, but they have not yet been notified of the cases.
According to the FDA, “Fournier’s gangrene is an extremely rare but life-threatening bacterial infection of the tissue under the skin that surrounds muscles, nerves, fat, and blood vessels of the perineum.” The pathogen usually infects the body through a break in the skin; it can destroy tissue rapidly. Symptoms can include fever and swelling or tenderness near the genitals and back to the rectum.
Of the twelve affected people, they were all hospitalized and needed surgery. “Some patients required multiple disfiguring surgeries, some developed complications, and one patient died, “ reported the FDA.