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Allison Snoddy
Allison Snoddy
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Vioxx Labels: Precautions vs. Warnings

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Today, another Vioxx trial has gotten under way in New Orleans. This case differs from the previous ones as the Plaintiff started taking Vioxx after April 2002, the date when Merck added information in the “Precautions” section of the label warning of increased risks for heart attacks and strokes.

The major issue is whether Merck should have included this information in the “Warnings” section; this would have indicated the severity of these particular risks. I am anxious to see how a jury feels about this because for me, personally as a consumer, I read labels, and I read warnings. I don’t think that I would take a medication that indicated that there is a WARNING regarding heart attacks and strokes. A precaution is one thing. It seems like everyday we are bombarded with prescription commercials, and it seems like most include the fastly spoken, quiet voice indicating that there might be a risk for “insert the illness here.” To me, that would seem different than actually saying, “hey look, we are warning you that others have had a heart attack or a stroke after taking this medication.” Personally, I’m anxious to see the outcome of this case.