Vioxx and Celebrex

Who said that investing in drug companies was safe? Vioxx was recently recalled by Merck. now Celebrex has similar problems but Pfizer Chief Executive Hank McKinnell said that, unlike Vioxx, Celebrex won’t be recalled.

An interesting aside by the way is that now the class action lawsuits against Vioxx are getting underway and the competition is fierce. I’ve heard reports that a paid search ad targeting Vioxx goes for $15.00 and up. Good news for Google shareholders, but not for Merck shareholders…

One wonders if Pfizer’s Celebrex will start getting the same class action attention as Merck’s Vioxx. It seems that they are similar drugs with similar side effects:

Merck recalled Vioxx on Sept. 30 after a study found that a long-term use of the drug doubled the risk of heart attack and stroke. Both Celebrex and Vioxx belong to a class of drugs known as COX-2 inhibitors. They work by selectively blocking a protein called COX-2 that has been linked to inflammation.

With the FDA being criticized for not taking Celebrex off the market, Pfizer shareholders have to hope that leaving this drug (with 2003 sales of $1.9 billion) doesn’t open up more legal liability than it’s worth.

One Response to “Vioxx and Celebrex”

  1. Michael Hammond says:

    The drug companies have put together a brilliant campaign to increase sales. The idea; to get kids on Ritalin through school psychologists and psychiatrists was pure genius. They came up with disorders; attention-deficit-disorder, mood-disorder, obsessive compulsive-disorder, anxiety-disorder, conversion-disorder, panic-disorder, phobic-disorder and on and on. All you have to do is hyphen “disorder” onto an emotion or a disability, whip up a drug to handle it and presto, the money pours in.
    And now the other drug companies are copying Novartis.
    The best thing is that these new clients as they get older will need more and more Ritalin as it is basically an amphetamine and most will be on some form of it for the rest of their lives; thus insuring growth. And now I see that they are working on getting babies on it. Wow! Will the brilliance ever cease?
    The outrageous allegations that Ritalin is a starter drug that creates addicts that then do street crime are just spurious charges done by people who are jealous of the money that the company and their investors make.