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Archives : 2011 : February

Rare Fractures Linked To Drugs For Weak Bones

February 28th, 2011

From NPR:

Schneider was one of the first women to suffer from one of these unusual fractures among patients who’ve been taking osteoporosis drugs called bisphosphonates for years. Or at least her case was one of the first reported in a medical journal, back in early 2006.

Since then, orthopedic surgeons and bone specialists have been seeing more of these unusual fractures among long-term users of bisphosphonate drugs such as Fosamax, Actonel, Boniva and Reclast.

In Chinese drywall cases, uncertainty brings tears

February 26th, 2011

From the Biloxi-Gulfport and South Mississippi Sun Herald:

Reeves said the revelation of the defective drywall was a heavy blow for many of his clients after the trauma the hurricane brought. The uncertainty about whether they’ll be paid and what they’ll do in the meantime sends many into tears.

As one of the main attorneys involved in the class action, Reeves said he knows of no one in Mississippi being compensated yet. The complicated court case moves forward.

“It’s a really bad situation,” Reeves said. “We have got to get them some relief. We’re going to press hard until they get it.”

Mo. Legislature endorses limits on hog farm suits

February 24th, 2011

From the Associated Press:

Critics of the legislation claimed the bill itself amounted to an attack on agriculture, by limiting the legal rights of longtime family farmers who have large-scale corporate farms move in nearby.

“We’re putting our thumb on the scale of justice and on the lives of rural Missourians,” said Rep. Chris Kelley, D-Columbia, a former judge.

Opponents of the bill said it could make large hog farms less likely to limit their pollution.

“It severely takes away the disincentive that these lawsuits create to make corporate-controlled factory farms be accountable — to be good neighbors — to the family farms that have been there for generations,” said Tim Gibbons, a spokesman for the Missouri Rural Crisis Center.

Seeger Weiss Sues Claiming Google Stole ‘Click to Call’ Tech From VoIP

February 22nd, 2011

From the American Lawyer:

Last week, Seeger Weiss filed a New York State Supreme Court trade secrets and breach of contract complaint against Google on behalf of the defunct Internet telecom VoIP Inc. and its parent, WABEC. The suit claims that Google developed its “Click to Call” feature, which allows users to make Internet phone calls by just clicking on a link, using misappropriated VoIP trade secrets.

Osteoporosis Drugs May Increase Risk of Rare Fractures

February 22nd, 2011

From Time Magazine:

In a trial involving nearly 4,300 women, all of whom used bisphosphonates during the study period between 2002 and 2008, those who took the drugs for more than five years were more than twice as likely as those using the medications for a shorter period to develop fractures in the thigh bone. Breaks in this bone, say the study authors, are relatively rare, and usually only occur after a trauma such as a car accident or other violent injury. The shaft of the thigh bone is normally protected from osteoporotic decay, which tends to occur more frequently in the smaller part of the bone closer to the hip joint, as well as in the more delicate architecture of the wrist and spine.

Recalled Devices Mostly Untested, New Study Says

February 14th, 2011

From the New York Times:

In a telephone interview, Dr. Nissen said that he was concerned that the administration had failed to take a more aggressive posture toward tightening the regulation of medical devices. In recent years, thousands of patients have been injured and some have died because of failed medical devices that were cleared for sale with little testing.

“This is an area where the F.D.A. has failed the public,” Dr. Nissen said.

Seeger Weiss Unveils “A Brief History of Pain Relief”

February 10th, 2011

Check out “A Brief History of Pain Relief,” an interactive timeline on Seeger Weiss’s Tylenol Liver Damage informational site.

Judge Wants More ‘Bellwether’ Trials In Litigation Over Merck’s Fosamax

February 7th, 2011

From the Wall Street Journal Law Blog:

In an order late Friday, New York federal John F. Keenan said he needs to hear additional bellwether cases before considering whether to send the remaining cases back to the original courts where they were filed. The federal cases were consolidated before Keenan in federal court in Manhattan. Two bellwether cases are scheduled for March and May.

Lauderhill home first in nation to get drywall fix as part of pilot program

February 7th, 2011

From the Sun Sentinel

Her home is the first of an estimated 300 to be repaired in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana as part of a pilot program announced last year by Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin, one of the largest makers of Chinese drywall.

About 30 of the homes scheduled for repairs are in Broward and Palm Beach counties. More are expected to be added shortly as the program expands.

Blogger takes on Verizon: “Broken on purpose”

February 3rd, 2011

Blogger Allison Shaw breaks down Verizon’s wrongful data charges:

It happens like this: you own a non-smartphone from Verizon. It can access the mobile web, but you decide you’re not going to buy a data plan because you don’t want to browse the web on your tiny mobile screen. You go about using your phone, but it has a big huge button that launches the mobile browser. When you click that button, it automatically starts loading some kind of “home” screen, using whole kilobytes worth of data in the process. Then you get charged a minimum usage fee for those kilobytes. This shows up on your statement, and you pay it probably without realizing it.

You can’t avoid pressing that web browser button on your non-smartphone because it’s in the same spot as another button that appears on a different screen, and we’re creatures of habit so of course we’re going to press it, or it’s too close to another button, or the buttons are too flat, or the icon looks like something else you did want to click. Oh, and you also can’t reassign the button to mean something else, or disable the web browser entirely.

In my mind, and I think probably everyone else’s as well, Verizon did this to customers on purpose. Through intentionally bad, broken design, they managed to charge their customers an extra $90 million dollars. Only when they were investigated by the FCC did they “discover” the “error” and vow to fix it, explaining that, “Verizon Wireless values our customer relationships and we always want to do the right thing for our customers,” (Mary Coyne, deputy general counsel for Verizon Wireless).

Verizon recently agreed to pay out the $90 million sum in refunds after being investigated by the FCC. You can read more about the story at the Huffington Post.