Vioxx: Valid Concerns
The FDA approved Vioxx in 1999. It was intended to reduce the pain and inflammation caused by osteoarthritis as well as menstrual pains. Afterwards, the FDA approved Vioxx for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. The drug, which is a once-daily pill, was considered more effective than traditional pain killers and to cause fewer gastrointestinal side effects.
What is Vioxx?
Vioxx is a COX-2 selective nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). Vioxx is also related to the nonselective NSAIDs , such as ibuprofen and naproxen. Vioxx is a prescription medicine used to relieve signs and symptoms of arthritis, acute pain in adults, and painful menstrual cycles.
Minor side effects with the use of Vioxx include upset stomach, dizziness, heartburn, vomiting and constipation. In March, 2002 an FDA report linked Vioxx to five cases of a nonbacterial type of meningitis. In May 2002, a report published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research stated that it may also impede bone repair due to the arthritis drug inhibiting cox-2 (which assists bone-forming cells in the healing process.)
The makers of Vioxx launched a three year study to confirm the relative gastrointestinal benefits of Vioxx when compared to another pain medicine, naproxen. The study did show that patients who took Vioxx had fewer ulcers and other stomach ailments, but the shock of the study proved to be the greater tendency to experience serious cardiovascular events when taking Vioxx.
In September 2004, Merck & Co., Inc., announced a voluntary withdrawal of Vioxx from the market due to safety concerns of an increased risk of cardiovascular problems such as heart attack, stroke, and blood clot. The study found that both high and low levels of the medication increase the risk, but patients taking the highest doses increase their risk of heart attack more than three-fold.
In Vioxx and naproxen test groups with more than 4,000 patients in each, Vioxx users suffered 101 “serious cardiovascular events” and 20 myocardial infarctions. That compared to 46 naproxen users who had cardiovascular events and only four who suffered heart attacks.
If you have concerns about the safety of Vioxx, or if you have experienced serious side effects associated with the drug, consult your doctor. It may also be important to contact an attorney who can help protect your legal rights. Please keep in mind that there may be time limits within which you must commence suit.
If you would like to locate a Vioxx Attorney, visit http://www.hugesettlements.com/
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