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According to the New York Times, Merck admitted yesterday that it was in error when it reported in 2005 that Vioxx caused heart problems only after 18 months of continuous use. Scientists outside of Merck said that Merck’s admission, along with clinical trials and real-world Vioxx use, supports critics’ claims that Vioxx caused heart problems quickly. Merck’s admission could undermine one of its main defenses in the 11,500 lawsuits it faces.

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