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Dan Friedman
Dan Friedman
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Merck continues to fight Vioxx lawsuits

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The pharmeceutical giant Merck is, for the time being, continuing to litigate each individual Vioxx claims. The company, having had some recent success, is intent on defending each case on the merits. Merck’s strategy, thus far, has been to question the relatedness of each Plaintiff’s injury with his or her use of Vioxx.

In the months since, however, the great Vioxx turkey shoot has not materialized. Merck’s strategy of taking every case to trial has resulted in more victories than losses. A Nov. 15 jury verdict absolving Merck of blame for the heart attack of a 61-year-old Utah man was its seventh win overall and third in four federal trials. Another 10 cases set for trial have been dismissed.

Merck views those as wins, too, because the suits either cannot be refiled or aren’t likely to be.