Grandfather to sue Vioxx manufacturer in High Court

Last month, the full court of the Federal Court ruled Graeme Peterson could have suffered his heart attack for reasons quite independent of taking the drug, manufactured by Merck Sharp & Dohme (MSD).

The decision overturned a 2010 Federal Court ruling that awarded more than $330,000 compensation to Mr Peterson, who had successfully argued Vioxx caused his heart attack.

In a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange on Wednesday, Mr Peterson’s lawyers said they had applied for special leave to appeal the decision to the High Court. His lawyers believe the application for leave will likely be heard before June 2012, the statement said.

Mr Peterson sued MSD, claiming he was no longer able to work because of the heart attack. But last month the full court allowed an appeal by MSD, finding Mr Peterson had been at risk of suffering a heart attack “quite independently of his consumption of Vioxx”.

In their judgment,