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Studies: Merck Engaged in Deception Over Vioxx

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By Admin on April 16, 2008 8:56 AM

Merck, manufacturer of the painkiller Vioxx, was slow to convey information on health risks associated with the drug, and the company wrote a number of research studies which were later published as the work of well-known doctors, according to two studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). The Washington Post reports that one study accuses Merck of giving the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) an "incomplete accounting of deaths in a clinical trial of Vioxx in people with mild dementia." According to the New York Times, the second JAMA study "provides a rare, detailed look into the industry practice of ghostwriting medical research studies that are then published in academic journals." In September 2004, Merck announced that it was voluntarily withdrawing Vioxx from the market worldwide, due to increased risks of cardiovascular problems (including heart attack and stroke) in users of the drug.