This is going to be big.
The case is pitting Judith Graves, a 67-year-old retired investigator for the United States Army, against Merck. According to the NYT, her lawyer, Timothy O’Brien recently told the jury that Graves’s jaw deterioration, allegedly caused by Fosamax, had required five surgeries, including one to replace part of her jaw with a bone from her left arm.
In its defense, Merck contends that Graves took other prescriptions — like steroids to treat rheumatoid arthritis — that weakened her immune system, leading to her jaw infection and healing problems, said Venable’s Paul F. Strain, outside counsel for the company.
But according to the NYT story, the trial is providing a glimpse into a larger debate among many doctors and researchers over when (if ever) to prescribe Fosamax and similar bone medications known as oral bisphosphonates.
I have prescribed Fosamax only a handful of times. I don’t like the drug. In my opinion it carries too much risk and offers too little benefit.
People who are taking Fosomax should make an appointment to discuss the wisdom of continued use of this drug.