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U. S. Supreme Court Denies Drug Manufacturer Wyeth's Complete Immunity Preemption Defense, Upholding Vermont Injury Case Jury Verdict

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In a closely watched decision handed down on March 4, 2009, the United States Supreme Court in the case of Wyeth v. Levine, denied the drug manufacturer's defense that federal regulations completely preempted state injury law claims filed by consumer Diana Levine, who was a musician and suffered amputation of a part of her arm because of complications from an injection of the medication called Phenergan, injected into her arm by a method called push IV. Levine won a jury verdict after a Vermont jury concluded that the product warnings did not adequately give medical doctors or clinicians the truth about the irreversible effect of Phenergan which-if injected in this fashion can reach the arteries of the human body and can cause gangrene, or here, amputation.  The decision marks the official rollback of a Bush administration backed legal trend to wrongfully wipe out consumer’s injury lawsuits in state courts under the (unconstitutional) guise of “complete immunity preemption.”

For the full article by my colleague Rick Shapiro, click here.

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