Carnivals

This week's Carnival of Liberty is posted at Searchlight Crusade.

This week's Grand Rounds is posted at Straight from the Doc.

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Re Grand Rounds/Vioxx I did

Re Grand Rounds/Vioxx
I did not read the transcript of the trial. I imagine it would be several thousand pages long.
From news reports it appears that the jury was outraged by certain internal documents found in company files. The drug makers were painted as stereotypical uncaring rich big businessmen who don’t mind if people die as long as they profit. Maybe they are for all I know. I do know the science behind the case was weak.

I have read the major article on Vioxx published in the NEJM (N Engl J Med 2005; 352:1092-1102, Mar 17, 2005; published at www.nejm.org ) The study showed a rate of 1.92 thrombotic events / 100 patient years in the Vioxx group and .78 events/100 patient years in the group that took no drug. No patients died.
So it looks like if you were in this group and took the drug for a year you had about a 2 % chance of getting a problem but if you didn’t take the drug almost one a percent cent chance of a thrombosis.
Now, the plaintive didn’t have a proven thrombosis. And even if he did he that is no proof that the drug caused it. There are no studies showing an increased death rate for the users of the drug. No evidence links the drug to sudden death due to arrhythmia.
The discussion in the New England Journal quoted several articles showing no association between cox 2 inhibitors and heart problems. It doesn’t appear that it was just a no brainer that the drug was a killer. It still appears safe for short to medium term use.( less than 18 months.) The drug is an effective pain reliever which will now be denied to many suffers. But who cares. Pain is silent. Chalk up another victory for jackpot justice.