What You Need to Know About Vioxx

On September 30, 2004, the manufacturer of the arthritis drug Vioxx, announced the voluntary worldwide recall of the medication. Merck & Co., the manufacturer of Vioxx, recalled the medication after a clinical trial that confirmed studies linking Vioxx to serious cardiovascular problems, including heart attack and stroke.

Vioxx is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug that is used to reduce pain, inflammation, and stiffness caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It works by reducing substances that cause inflammation, pain, and fever in the body. It can help treat acute pain in adults, treat migraines, and treat menstrual pain.

Vioxx and pregnancy

To date, it is not known whether Vioxx directly caused any harm to an unborn baby. However, it was noted that Vioxx should not have been taken in the third trimester because it may affect the formation of the baby’s heart. It is also not known if Vioxx passes into breast milk.

Important note: anyone over the age of 65 is more likely to experience possible side effects from taking Vioxx.

Vioxx Possible Side Effects

One of the main reasons for its recall in 2004 was due to the alarming list of possible side effects patients were experiencing while taking Vioxx. These possible side effects range from mild to severe and included:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Tenderness
  • Nausea
  • Bloody, black stools
  • Blood in vomit
  • A skin rash or itching
  • Yellowing of skin or eyes
  • Unexplained weight gain
  • Swelling or water retention
  • Unusual fatigue
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Unusual bruising or bleeding
  • Dizziness
  • Mild fatigue or weakness
  • Diarrhea

Allergic reactions are also possible, the side effects would include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Closing of throat
  • Swelling of lips
  • Swelling of tongue
  • Swelling of face
  • Hives

Despite a long list of side effects, you could still have taken Vioxx without experiencing any of them. There is, however, a possibility that a pre-existing condition could make you more vulnerable to experiencing one or several of the possible side effects of the medication Vioxx. Your doctor should have been aware of any and all pre-existing conditions before prescribing Vioxx to you.

Possible pre-existing conditions that may have made you more vulnerable to experiencing a possible side effect of Vioxx may include:

  • Had an ulcer in your stomach
  • Had liver disease
  • Had kidney disease
  • Had asthma
  • Had congestive heart failure
  • Had fluid retention
  • Had heart disease
  • Had high blood pressure
  • Had a coagulation (bleeding) disorder
  • If you were taking an anticoagulant, blood thinner
  • If you were taking a steroid medicine
  • If you were smoking
  • If you were drinking alcohol
Other Notes on Vioxx

Vioxx was withdrawn voluntarily by its manufacturer in 2004. The medication which was used to help reduce pain, inflammation, and stiffness caused by osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, was found to possibly cause such severe side effects as heart attack and stroke.

Patients over the age of 65 are at the highest risk of experiencing any of the possible side effects of Vioxx.

Vioxx side effects can be severe and you should seek legal help if you or a loved one have suffered due to taking this medication. Please call me today at 916.921.6400 or 800.404.5400.

DISCLAIMER: This document is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a Retainer/Services Agreement. No attorney-client relationship will exist between you and our firm unless and until we enter into a signed Retainer/Services Agreement. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be medical or legal advice. Do not stop taking any medication without consulting your physician.

Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 5.11.20]

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