Sydney - An Australian man who blamed an arthritis pill for his 2003 heart attack had his compensation claim against US pharmaceuticals company Merck & Co Ltd overturned on appeal Wednesday.
In March 2010, Graeme Peterson was awarded 287,000 Australian dollars (286,000 US dollars) by a lower court that described Vioxx as a defective product.
Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Ltd, Merck's local subsidiary, won its appeal against that decision before the full bench of the Federal Court sitting in Melbourne.
Justice Michelle Gordon said in her ruling that the case against Vioxx was circumstantial.
'There was no medical 'signature' for Vioxx which might indicate that Mr Peterson's heart attack was caused by Vioxx,' she said.
Merck voluntarily withdrew Vioxx from worldwide sale in September 2004 because of concerns over heart attacks and strokes.
It set up a fund to resolve injury claims in the US but there was no matching fund to deal with claims outside the US.