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Exception reporting chaos as GPs plead for answers

My first intimation of the withdrawal of the cox-2 inhibitor Vioxx was on BBC TV news on September 30. I gleaned significantly more information from the newspapers the next day when The Times carried the story on the front page with detailed information, including legal advice, inside.

My issue of Pulse, which duly arrived on the morning of October 2, afforded me further detailed information including advice from the Medical Defence Union.

Information from the NHS bureaucracy has been scanty and unhelpful. Notification or information from Merck Sharp & Dohme has been zero. Is there something seriously wrong with the system?

Dr JM Beatson

Troon, Ayrshire

Exactly what does Vioxx (News, October 4) mean in its advert in Pulse by 'Stopping Power' in large letters underlined in red?

Dr Alan Measroch

Trowbridge

I was delighted to see your article outlining the new evidence for the cardiovascular risk of cox-2 inhibitors, stating 'the Vigor trial found the rate of myocardial infarction was five times higher in patients taking rofecoxib'.

Immediately below this was a large advertisement for Vioxx Acute with the legend 'Stopping Power' underlined in big red letters. I'm not sure this combination is quite the message the manufacturer would have intended!

Dr Simon Fraser

Shirley,

Southampton

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