The recent abrupt withdrawal of Vioxx, after a clinical trial linked the drug to heart attacks and stroke, will, more than likely, open the floodgate to lawsuits against the manufacturer, Merck. Over 20 million people have taken Vioxx since it was released to the public in 1999. The recently released clinical trial found that people taking a low dose of Vioxx, were twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke as patients taking a placebo.
Researchers have warned about a connection between Vioxx and increased risk of heart attack and stroke for many years. But until last week, Merck ignored the presumptive data. Now that Merck has acknowledged the safety risks of its anti inflammatory medication, the result could be a flood of successful lawsuits.