Healthcare Industry News:  Cook 

Biopharmaceuticals Litigation

 News Release - January 5, 2006

OxyContin(R) Dismissals and Withdrawals Exceed 400

Last OxyContin case pending in Ohio against Purdue Pharma is dismissed; litigation dockets clear in 11 states

STAMFORD, Conn., Jan. 5 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- The dismissal with prejudice of the last product liability case pending in Ohio against Purdue Pharma L.P., the Stamford, Connecticut-based distributor of OxyContin® (oxycodone HCl controlled-release) Tablets, marks the 401st OxyContin product liability case nationwide to end in Purdue Pharma's favor. Dismissal of Cook v. Purdue Pharma, et. al, on December 29, 2005 also ends nearly five years of product liability litigation in that state. During that time a total of 11 cases filed against Purdue Pharma in Ohio either have been withdrawn by the plaintiffs or dismissed by the court.

"The Cook case represents an important benchmark in the history of the OxyContin litigation," commented Howard R. Udell, Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer at Purdue Pharma. "The product liability litigation involving OxyContin began in Ohio in April 2001 and the Ohio dockets are now clear of those cases. Ohio also becomes the eleventh state in which every pending OxyContin product liability case has been concluded in our favor.

"On top of that, 401 product liability cases against Purdue Pharma involving OxyContin have now been concluded in our favor. All told, personal injury claims filed by 1,665 individual plaintiffs have either been dismissed or abandoned. In no such case or claim have we paid anything in settlement and no verdict ever has been entered against the company.

"The outcomes speak for themselves," Udell concluded. "The allegations in these lawsuits are false. When they cannot be substantiated, the courts dismiss them or the plaintiffs and their lawyers give up. We have vigorously defended our product and our company and are gratified by these results."

Purdue Pharma resolved an economic injury case brought by the Attorney General of West Virginia under an agreement in which the parties expressly acknowledged that settlement did not constitute an admission of wrongdoing by Purdue Pharma.

The professional product labeling for OxyContin® Tablets contains the following boxed warning:

WARNING:

OxyContin is an opioid agonist and a Schedule II controlled substance with an abuse liability similar to morphine.

Oxycodone can be abused in a manner similar to other opioid agonists, legal or illicit. This should be considered when prescribing or dispensing OxyContin in situations where the physician or pharmacist is concerned about an increased risk of misuse, abuse, or diversion.

OxyContin Tablets are a controlled-release oral formulation of oxycodone hydrochloride indicated for the management of moderate to severe pain when a continuous, around-the-clock analgesic is needed for an extended period of time.

OxyContin Tablets are NOT intended for use as a prn analgesic.

OxyContin 80 mg and 160 mg Tablets ARE FOR USE IN OPIOID-TOLERANT PATIENTS ONLY. These tablet strengths may cause fatal respiratory depression when administered to patients not previously exposed to opioids.

OxyContin TABLETS ARE TO BE SWALLOWED WHOLE AND ARE NOT TO BE BROKEN, CHEWED, OR CRUSHED. TAKING BROKEN, CHEWED, OR CRUSHED OxyContin TABLETS LEADS TO RAPID RELEASE AND ABSORPTION OF A POTENTIALLY FATAL DOSE OF OXYCODONE.

Full prescribing information for OxyContin is available at http://www.purduepharma.com/PI/Prescription/Oxycontin.pdf.


Source: Purdue Pharma

Issuer of this News Release is solely responsible for its content.
Please address inquiries directly to the issuing company.



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