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Jury Awards $9 Million In Punitives In Vioxx Trial

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A jury reached a $9 million verdict today regarding the punitive damages phase of the latest Vioxx Trial involving John McDarby and his wife. This verdict comes just days after the same jury awarded John McDarby and his wife $4.5 million in compensatory damages for his related heart attack while using Vioxx. Tuesday’s verdict brings the total award to $13.5 million for the couple.

According to Marketwatch.com:

Last week, the jury found McDarby’s use of Vioxx for about four years played a substantial role in his 2004 heart attack, and that Merck had failed to properly warn of Vioxx’s cardiovascular risks. The jury also found last week that Merck violated the state’s consumer fraud law.

The punitive-damages phase of the trial, which began Thursday, centered on whether Merck withheld information about Vioxx’s safety risks from the Food and Drug Administration, or misrepresented it. The jury also had to determine whether that information was material and relevant to the “harm” in question, and whether Merck showed a wanton and willful disregard of someone’s rights.

Merck has plans to appeal the verdict. For more information on the Vioxx Verdict click here