Vioxx (rofecoxib) molecule

Vioxx (rofecoxib) molecule

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Credit: DR TIM EVANS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Vioxx (rofecoxib) molecule, computer model. Vioxx was a COX-2 inhibitor painkilling drug marketed by Merck & Co. It was withdrawn in 2004 due to fears that its use may increase the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. In August 2005, a US court awarded a woman $253.4m (£141m) in compensation after her husband died while taking Vioxx. The finding could open up a path for thousands of similar lawsuits from people whose health suffered while on Vioxx. Around two million people are thought to have taken Vioxx worldwide since it was launched in 1999. Statistically, that could mean nearly 30,000 deaths relate to its use. In this molecule, carbon is pink, oxygen green, hydrogen white, and sulphur cyan.

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