This site is intended for health professionals only

Clinical guidelines round-up


GPs should regularly review patients with diabetes on pioglitazone after a warning of a link with bladder cancer. The European Medicines Agency's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use scrutinised data that showed a statistically significant 22% increased risk of bladder cancer compared with to other anti-diabetic agents. It recommended GPs review patients three to six months after initiation, and regularly thereafter, ‘to ensure that only patients who are deriving sufficient benefit continue to take it.'

European Medicines Agency, 21 July


Patients with COPD should have an annual ‘comprehensive clinical and psychosocial assessment', according to draft quality standards on COPD published by NICE. The assessment should include degree of breathlessness, frequency of exacerbations, validated measures of health status and prognosis, presence of hypoxaemia and comorbidities. GPs should also offer patients an up to date individualised comprehensive management plan to encourage which self-management of the condition.

NICE COPD quality standard, 29 July


The first once-weekly type 2 diabetes medication has been launched in the UK. Exenatide 2 mg is a GLP-1 receptor agonist, taken once-weekly by injection, and is indicated for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in combination with metformin, sulphonylureas, thiazolidinediones, metformin and a sulphonylureas, metformin and a thiazolidinedione in adults who have not achieved adequate glycaemic control on maximally tolerated doses of these oral therapies.

Lilly, 12 July