Interesting turn in Vioxx case
So a doctor gets so convinced of Merck's slick marketing that he starts to prescribe Vioxx not only to his patients but also decides to take it himself. And as have tens of thousands of others, not only his patients but he himself suffered a heart attack.
Dr. John Braun is suing the company and is testifying in the cases of John McDarby and Thomas Cona. Dr. Braun says that Merck sales rep were so aggressive that they visited him twice a week. A few months ago it was disclosed that Merck trained its sales rep to cover up the risks of Vioxx.
In the case currently under trial, not a lot of new information is being presented. The main attack line used by the lawyers is familiar - Merck tried its best to hide the fatal risks of taking Vioxx and aggressively marketed the drug to unsuspecting patients and doctors and tried to drown out any questions about safety.
The outcome of this trial is very important because both the victims have taken the painkiller for more than 18 months - the company agrees that Vioxx does raise the risk of heart attacks and strokes if taken that long. The company won two previous cases of victims who used the drug for less than that period.
Related article: Scientists criticize Merck