History is being repeated all over again. When Merck announced a Vioxx recall, it did so without accepting any responsibility for 140,000 cases of personal injury to Americans. No surprise then that Vioxx patients who have been hurt are lining up to file class action lawsuits against Merck.
Many analysts expected that Pfizer would simply do the right thing and admit that all Cox-2 drugs, including Celebrex and Bextra, do have some safety issues and the drugmakers should work together with the FDA to resolve them. The matter would have ended there. On the other hand, Pfizer kept arguing that Celebrex and Bextra had no safety issues and refused to do anything until a forced Bextra recall by the FDA last week. In addition, a strong black box warning on Pfizer's other Cox-2 drug Celebrex. In other words, users of Celebrex and particularly Bextra have a legal right to claim personal injury and demand compensation from Pfizer.
The Bextra class action lawsuits process has already begun and is expected to follow the Vioxx class action lawsuits. But everything is not the same, despite numerous similarities between the two:
- While Merck voluntarily withdrew Vioxx, the FDA forced Pfizer to recall Bextra. The FDA did not agree with Pfizer and a panel of experts that Bextra was safe enough to be sold in the US. Drug regulatory agencies worldwide concur with the FDA and have directed Pfizer to recall Bextra.
- The number of Americans who have taken Bextra and those that have actually been injured by it is relatively small compared to Vioxx.
If you have taken Bextra for an extended period of time and have experienced its side effects, it is a good idea to discuss your situation with your doctor and a Bextra attorney. Not everyone is a good candidate for such litigation and an experienced lawyer is in a position to evaluate your specific case and determine if you should proceed forward.
It is also a good idea to work only with reputed law firms that specialize in product liability lawsuits. There are a lot of lawyers that will try to mislead you but if you do your research before picking the right one, you will save yourself a lot of hassle and make sure that you get the right compensation.
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