The Vioxx Litigation Documents collection is comprised of documents from the following cases:
John McDarby and Thomas Cona sued Merck & Co. claiming that they suffered heart attacks after taking Vioxx for arthritis. They claimed that Merck knew that the drug increased the risk of heart attack but failed to warn of the risk. Merck asserted a causation defense claiming that taking the drug did not cause the heart attacks. The case concluded with a plaintiffs' verdict of $4.5 million for McDarby and only $45 (the cost of his medication) for Cona.
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The widow of Robert Ernst, a Vioxx user, filed the first Vioxx claim which went to court in August 2005. The Texas jury found Merck to be negligent in the death of 59-year-old Ernst and ordered the company to pay $253.4 million. In 2008, a Texas appeals court reversed the judgment in that suit finding the evidence to be "legally insufficient on the issue of causation."
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Frederick "Mike" Humeston and the widow of Brian Hermans sued Merck & Co. claiming that the Vioxx that Humeston and Hermans took was defective and unreasonably dangerous and that Merck failed to provide warnings about the risk of heart attack. Brian Hermans of Waupaca, Wisconsin, died at age 44 after having a heart attack. Plaintiffs claimed that Merck committed consumer fraud by misleading doctors and patients and by intentionally suppressing, concealing or omitting information about the risks of Vioxx, which was withdrawn from the market in September 2004.
Browse Hermans v Merck documents
This 2005 personal injury case, known as "The New Jersey Vioxx Case," was brought by Frederick "Mike" and Mary Humeston against Merck & Co. Humeston claimed that taking Vioxx for knee pain caused him to suffer a heart attack in 2001. During the original trial, Merck was cleared of any wrongdoing. The Atlantic City jury, relying on medical professional testimony, decided that Merck had provided enough warning to doctors and voted unanimously on three counts that Merck did not mislead doctors about the drug's safety.
A re-trial took place in 2007 in which New Jersey Superior Court Judge Carol E. Higbee vacated the November 2005 verdict on various grounds, including findings by the New England Journal of Medicine that Merck had failed to report material cardiovascular safety data in connection with the publication of its landmark 2000 Vioxx clinical study known as VIGOR. In March 2007, the jury returned a guilty verdict awarding a total of $20 million in compensatory damages to the Humestons.
Browse Frederick Humeston v Merck documents