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Merck, the maker of the drug Vioxx, has recently said it opposes a plan by a New Jersey judge to limit upcoming Vioxx lawsuit trials to those involving users who took the drug for 18 months or longer.

Superior Court Judge Carol Higbee, whose court is overseeing about half of the U.S. personal-injury suits involving Vioxx, will hold a hearing Thursday on the matter. Merck has opposed the ideas stating that “we want the court to deal with the whole mix of cases.” This is interesting given that the cases involving usage of 18 months or longer are usually the most serious cases.

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