On September 30, 2004 the manufacturer of Vioxx withdrew the drug from the market because of safety concerns.


As Vioxx became widely used, patient problems began to become more prevalent, including serious heart ailments. One source for the discovery was a study sponsored by Merck & Co., the maker of Vioxx.

Vioxx and Cardiovascular Events

Merck sought to confirm the relative gastrointestinal benefits of Vioxx compared to another painkiller called Naproxen. Although the study concluded that patients who took Vioxx had fewer ulcers and other stomach ailments, it also indicated that those who took Vioxx were more likely to experience serious cardiovascular events.

In Vioxx test groups of more than 4,000 patients, Vioxx users suffered 101 serious cardiovascular events whereas only 46 Naproxen users did.

Medical journals later reported that the use of Vioxx may increase a patient’s risk of heart attack plus stroke and kidney failure. Questions also have been raised about whether the drugs are effective in treating pain.

FDA Warning

In 2001, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning letter about the drugs. It called Merck promotions for Vioxx “false, lacking in fair balance or otherwise misleading.”

Merck has claimed that Vioxx doesn’t cause heart attacks; other pain medicines thin the blood and may prevent heart attacks whereas simply Vioxx does not. The FDA noted that Merck’s claim was purely hypothetical and blasted Merck for minimizing and omitting important risk information about Vioxx use with other drugs.

The FDA called “incomprehensible” Merck’s claim that Vioxx has a “favorable cardiovascular safety profile ” and reminded the drug manufacturer that its own study showed patients on Vioxx were more than twice as likely to suffer serious cardiovascular events than patients on Naproxen.

If you or a loved one has experienced side effects such as a heart attack or other cardiovascular event after taking Vioxx, you may have a claim against Merck. Kline & Specter, PC, with more than 50 experienced attorneys (several of whom are also highly regarded doctors), is one of the nation's leading law firms with the ability to litigate Vioxx lawsuits. Unlike some lawyers who may take cases and refer them to other firms to take to trial, Kline & Specter has the skill, experience and ability to achieve the right result for you and your family.

For a free evaluation of your Vioxx claim contact our experienced Vioxx heart attack attorneys today. We will evaluate your Vioxx heart attack or stroke lawsuit and help you get the settlement you deserve.


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