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Pfizer Inc., manufacturer of Bextra and Celebrex, has agreed to pay out $894 million to settle personal injury suits and other legal tangles involving the two pain medications.
Bextra, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) pain medication, was pulled from the market in 2005. Celebrex, another NSAID, continues to be a top seller for Pfizer. Reuters reports that the $894 in settlements (announced Thursday) will be distributed as follows: $745 million to settle personal injury cases related to Bextra and Celebrex; $60 million to settle with 33 states and the District of Columbia over the marketing of Bextra; and $89 million toward resolution of consumer fraud class actions over potential financial harm caused by the promotion of the two drugs. According to Forbes, "the decision to settle follows a string of litigation that found in favor of Pfizer in federal and New York State courts over claims that Celebrex caused heart attacks and strokes in patients."