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Sunday, November 07, 2004

Gary Firm Files Suit Against Merck & Walgreens

Firm Files Suit Against Merck & Walgreens

Friday November 5

PRNewswire -- Today the nationally known law office of prominent attorney Willie Gary filed suit against drug giant Merck and Walgreens. Attorneys are representing a Martin County, Florida man who says he's lucky to be alive after repeatedly using Vioxx. Mark Tomlin was prescribed Vioxx for neck pain and without having any health issues, he suddenly had heart failure at the age of 49. Tomlin survived the heart attack, but doctors say he suffered so much damage that his life expectancy is in serious jeopardy.

"I have 100-percent blockage in an artery which is behind my heart and it's too risky for doctors to operate," Tomlin said. "I'm nervous to do anything, because it could kill me."

The suit, which was filed this morning in St. Lucie County, claims that Merck & Company knew that Vioxx could increase the chances of heart attack and stroke, but did nothing to warn doctors or the public. It goes further to state that not only did Merck intentionally hide the dangers from doctors and patients, but Merck actually spent $100 million a year on aggressive marketing campaigns which continually touted the pain reliever as totally safe.

"Three years ago the FDA (Food & Drug Administration) sanctioned Merck because they were misrepresenting Vioxx as a safe drug with no real risks," said attorney Madison McClellan, Willie Gary's partner. "And now we have a father and husband whose life is going to be cut short, because Merck wanted to gain market share ... that's just greed and they need to pay."

In 2003, Vioxx sales totalled $2.5 billion. On September 30, 2004 Merck pulled Vioxx from the market, and it is no longer being sold. McCellan says they have also attained internal emails which prove Merck knew all along the dangers of Vioxx.

"They told everyone that it was a miracle drug, but it was actually a nightmare," said McClellan.

For more information about this suit, contact Tom McNicholas at (772) 263-1567.


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