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Cancer Death Blamed on Diabetes Drug

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (CN) - A widow says that Byetta, an injectable diabetes drug, gave her husband of 29 years the liver and pancreatic cancer that killed him. Shadia Salem sued Eli Lilly and Amylin Pharmaceuticals for negligence, failure to warn, and loss of consortium.

Fred J. Salem was prescribed Byetta in July 2007 and shortly thereafter began to suffer from numerous side effects, including weight loss, skin discoloration, nausea and fever, his widow claims in Duval County Court.

As his condition deteriorated, he was diagnosed with cancer of the liver and pancreas. He died in January 2008, 6 months after his first injection of the drug.

The widow claims that the drug companies negligently marketed and promoted the drug and breached warranty by failing to adequately test it or warn consumers of its dangers.

She claims the drug companies "overstated the drug's benefits while downplaying the nature and extent of the risks," particularly pancreatitis.

She seeks medical and funeral expenses and other damages.

She is represented by Richard Lantinberg with Wilner Hartley & Metcalf.

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