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Wednesday, August 30, 2006 - Ark. Judge to Hear First of 4,500 Suits Over Prempro: "Ark. Judge to Hear First of 4,500 Suits Over Prempro
Andrew DeMillo
The Associated Press
August 22, 2006
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As lawyers argued over which evidence should be allowed, a judge in Little Rock, Ark., Monday delayed jury selection in the first trial of 4,500 lawsuits filed nationwide that challenge Prempro, a hormone-replacement therapy that some women say causes breast cancer.
Linda Reeves of Benton, Ark., sued drug maker Wyeth, claiming she developed breast cancer after taking Prempro for eight years. Helene Rush of Little Rock has argued similar claims in a federal suit against the drug maker. Rush has an Oct. 10 court date.
Prempro is a widely prescribed estrogen-progestin combination used to treat premenopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes.
While plaintiffs say Wyeth was more worried about money than patient safety while developing the drug, the drug company wants jurors to see its request -- made to the Food and Drug Administration in 1983 -- for a study about the effects of combining estrogen and progestin. Reeves' lawyers want the evidence limited, saying jurors could be overwhelmed by such a huge file and miss its key portions.
Lawyers for both sides argued about the evidence before U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry L. Jones Jr. on Monday as Jones filled in temporarily for U.S. District Judge William R. Wilson, who will preside over the trial. Jones pushed back jury selection to Tuesday. "


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