New Haven Connecticut Plans to File Vytorin Lawsuit

The city of New Haven, Connecticut, has indicated that they plan to file a Vytorin lawsuit against Merck and Schering-Plough to recover over $400,000 in prescription costs paid for employees who received the cholesterol drug that has been found to provide no medical benefit.

Vytorin is a combination drug that contains Zocor (simvastatin) and Zetia (ezetimibe). It was approved by the FDA in 2004 for treatment of cholesterol and it has grown into a blockbuster medication, with annual sales of $5 billion in 2007.

Earlier this year, a study found that Vytorin does not provide any benefit over the use of cheaper generic versions of Zocor.

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The study, which followed 720 people with very high cholesterol levels, found that while Vytorin does lower cholesterol, there was no significant different between Vytorin users and users of Zocor alone in the reduction of plaque which can develop in the inner walls of the arteries. The build up of this plaque could potentially lead to an increased risk of a heart attack or stroke, which is the primary reason the cholesterol drugs are prescribed.

Generic versions of Zocor are available at a cost of only about $1 per pill, compared with nearly $3 per pill charged for Vytorin.

Vytorin class action lawsuits have been filed in several states on behalf of patients and medical insurers who paid for the drug. The cases seek reimbursement for the different between the cost of the prescription and what would have been paid for the generic drug, since Vytorin promised added benefits.

According to The New Haven Independent, New Haven’s top lawyer attempted to locate a class action lawsuit that the city could join, but did not find any. Therefore, the city put out a request for a proposal from outside product liability law firms who were interested in pursuing the city’s Vytorin lawsuit under a contingency fee agreement, where they would not be paid if they do not win.


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