Musician vs Wyeth now in Supreme Court

. Monday, November 3

This is Diana Levine, a guitarist and pianist who had to have her right arm amputated because of a "botched" injection of Phenergan, an anti nausea drug made by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. A Vermont jury awarded Levine $6.7 million saying that the warning of risks of improper administration of the drug was not clear on the label. The case is now before the Supreme Court to decide the issue of whether the federal government can limit consumer lawsuits in cases where people have been harmed by prescription drugs. Wyeth is arguing that drug makers cannot make changes to labels without FDA approval and states cannot bring charges against a federally approved drug. As I recall, it wasn't that long ago that Wyeth faced a lot of negative press when the drug PremPro came under fire for actually causing cancer and osteoporosis in menopausal women instead of reducing the risks as the giant drug maker claimed. Levine is just another notch in its long list of people harmed in the mad rush to market drugs not fully researched. Lab rats, that's all we are; and there is no doubt people have far fewer rights than large corporations.