Another Vioxx Trial, Another Defense Verdict

Merck won another Vioxx case in federal court, but when you hear the background of the plaintiff it is easy to understand why.

According to an AP report posted on, the plaintiff "had other risk factors for his heart attack, including tobacco use, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and cocaine use."  The article goes on to state that defense lawyer "Phil Beck attacked [plaintiff] Dedrick’s credibility, noting five worthless-check convictions and allegations that Dedrick lied under oath at a disability hearing.   Beck questioned whether Dedrick was telling the truth when he said he continued taking Vioxx even after being prescribed a narcotic painkiller. "

You have to wonder why the hell that case was filed, much less tried.  My guess is that it was filed to toll the one-year statute of limitations in Tennessee and that it was tried because it was part of the case-picking process used by the federal court in New Orleans to establish some benchmarks for the balance of the cases.

Read the entire article here.  By the way, the plaintiff was from Waynesboro, Tennessee.