Bernstein Liebhard LLP Reports On Opening Statements In Federal Fosamax Lawsuit
On September 8, 2011, opening statements in Secrest v. Merck, a Fosamax lawsuit that is part of the consolidated litigation, In re Fosamax Products Liability Litigation (“MDL No. 1789”), took place. The bellwether Fosamax lawsuit is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York before Judge John F. Keenan. This is the fifth Fosamax lawsuit to go to trial and is expected to last several weeks. The plaintiff in this Fosamax lawsuit, Linda Secrest, alleges that as a result of taking the bisphosphonate, she developed osteonecrosis of the jaw (“ONJ”), a serious side effect of Fosamax. The Fosamax lawsuit also alleges that Merck failed to adequately warn consumers that ONJ was a potential side effect of Fosamax. In addition to this current Fosamax lawsuit, Merck is also defending thousands of others filed by individuals who suffered Fosamax side effects, including those who sustained Fosamax femur fractures.
Plaintiff’s Opening Statements: ONJ Is A Serious Side Effect Of Fosamax
The opening statements made by plaintiff’s counsel in the Fosamax lawsuit summarized the points submitted to the Court in Plaintiff’s Pre-Trial Memorandum* (Case No. 1:06-cv-06292-JFK). As described more fully in the Pre-Trial Memorandum, plaintiff’s counsel told the jury that: (1) Fosamax causes ONJ; (2) it was reasonably foreseeable to Merck that Fosamax would cause ONJ; (3) Merck insufficiently monitored post-marketing adverse event data; (4) Merck made misleading representations regarding ONJ; (5) Merck made no attempt to study the risk of ONJ relative to Fosamax; and (6) Merck overstated the efficacy of Fosamax.
Merck Defends Fosamax Lawsuit: Plaintiff’s Injuries Were Not A Side Effect Of Fosamax
Prior to opening statements, Merck released a public statement regarding the Secrest Fosamax lawsuit.** During opening statements, counsel for Merck, the manufacturer of Fosamax, reiterated those arguments, specifically focusing on two themes. First, the defense claimed that plaintiff did not develop ONJ as a side effect of Fosamax; instead her pre-existing medical condition and a history of dental problems caused her injuries. Second, the defense maintained that Fosamax was not defectively designed. In addition to denying a design defect, Merck maintained that once it became aware that ONJ was a possible side effect of Fosamax, it conducted an investigation, which ultimately concluded that there was no reliable evidence linking Fosamax to ONJ.
FDA Issues Fosamax Femur Fracture Warning
In addition to jaw deterioration, Fosamax femur fractures have also been reported by individuals taking the medication. In October 2010, the FDA issued a Fosamax femur fracture warning*** that Fosamax and other bisphosphonates put patients at risk for atypical thigh bone (femur) fractures. Since that time, Bernstein Liebhard LLP has provided a wealth of consumer information concerning the risks associated with Fosamax use on its website, www.consumerinjurylawyers.com. If you or a loved one sustained a side effect of Fosamax, such as a femur fracture, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages and other injuries.
For more information about filing a Fosamax femur fracture lawsuit, contact an attorney at Bernstein Liebhard LLP at (877) 779-1414 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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