Monday, December 13, 2010

Yale's Drs. Krumholz And Ross Show VIOXX® Risks Persisted, Even One Year After Use Ended

In a study captioned "Persistence of Cardiovascular Risk After Rofecoxib Discontinuation" released in the Archives of Internal Medicine tonight, two prominent Yale cardiologists find that the elevated stroke and heart attack risks associated with Vioxx® persisted, even a full year after the patients stopped taking the now withdrawn drug -- per Reuters latest reporting:

. . . .But over the five years it was on the market, researchers estimate it caused nearly 40,000 deaths.

The new findings, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, are based on data made available by Merck during multibillion-dollar litigation against the company.

They show patients taking Vioxx (also called rofecoxib) doubled their chances of having blood clots or dying in the first half-year after discontinuing treatment, confirming earlier results that hinted the effects might last up to one year.

What happens after that is still an open question, said Dr. Joseph Ross of the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, who worked on the study. . . .

His co-author Dr. Harlan Krumholz, also of Yale, said the study also stokes concerns about painkillers in the same class as Vioxx -- the so-called selective COX-2 inhibitors. . . .

Stay tuned -- as this may fuel a new bolus of global settlement opt-outs.

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