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Boston Scientific Corporation Message Board

  • catheternose catheternose Oct 13, 2006 9:15 AM Flag

    Mass Tort Coming for BSX: LaST

    Anyone thinking BSX is going to escape a mass tort related to late stent thrombosis needs to do a lot more homework. Here is a road map, but if you delve into these issues like I have, it is not even a difficult call:

    There is little to distinguish the problems with late stent thrombosis from most other mass torts in the area at a comparable stage. The similarities to Vioxx, Phen-fen, silicone breast implants, Shiley heart valve, and short circuiting defibrillators/pacemakers outweigh the differences. All of those situations were dismissed at a comparable stage by thought leaders and manufacturers and all ended up knocking the manufacturers on their can. Remember that Rx analyst (ex-Smith Barney) running around saying that Vioxx had problems years before it was taken off the market? Merck and the physicians and various journals (NEJM)did exactly what BSX, JNJ and various so-called thought leaders are doing now: obfuscating and taking cover behind the absence of definitive data.

    Anyone taking comments from Stone and Grupe (who are attempting to diminish concerns about LaST) should consider how much their reputation and finances have benefited from the rise of DES. They are going to be among the last to yell "fire". Of course they try and take cover behind the fact that no study has definitively shown how serious the problem is, but someone has to pay for a study like that and BSX and JNJ have little to gain and lots to lose by paying for a study like that. They will happily slice and dice and selectively disclose data from their previous trials which are too small and not powered to find differences; where the dead are buried and cannot be autopsied to see if they died from a late thrombosis; where the comparison bear metal stents were old and outdated versions; where the patients were hand-picked and only the top centers and docs were implanting etc.

    Mary Russell knew there was a problem and where is she now? Look when she started to sell stock. She exercised options that had years of life left on them and immediately sold the stock.

    If you count the number of deaths, instead of relying on company definitions of late thrombosis, you get a different picture. In the real world, the numbers are going to be higher. But interventional docs and the manufacturers can at least credibly claim it is not a problem because they know that autopsies aren't done on most patients who die, so the odds of a death being classified as a late thrombotic event are understated. It is increasingly clear that the problem is more likely to get worse over time, not better since the polymer and drug are present for life. We know that most compounds like these polymers cross-link and break down over time, so why would your default position be that no drug will continue to elute over time?

    Six million DES have been implanted (same number as took fen-phen - $21-25 billion is the cost to WYE) and the incidence of late thrombotic events (which has been consistently understated in the clinical trials funded by BSX and JNJ) is likely somewhere between 1-3% in the real world (likely higher than the percentage of Vioxx takers who ran into heart problems). There were no smoking guns with Vioxx or fen-phen, the products were simply used off label and too widely. Same with DES.

    Since no one is talking about this, one can only assume it is not in the price. Look out on this one.

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    • Late stent thrombosis will haunt BSX in a much bigger way next year. The elephant in the room is that this litigation is hurtling down the rails at high speed.

      The FDA works like the FED: it doesn't change direction until the evidence is definitively shown in a formal way. By the time they drop rates the economy is usually already in a recession. Until the evidence for late stent thrombosis becomes "conclusively" shown, the FDA panel can hide behind the lack of a clear cut answer. Global warming? Same thing. Groups that must make decisions rarely speculate or even act on well founded evidence. It's hard to prove anything conclusively in science; but LaST is an easy call. Late stent thrombosis is real, the pathology tells us it's real, the mechanism is mostly understood and only needs tweaking at this point, and the numbers are starting to build. The last piece will only take time. But markets and lawyers move ahead of the studies being published. BSX is in store for some very difficult times. The concentration of their exposure and their debt load make this stock a disaster waiting to happen. You won't put the genie back in the bottle on LaST, the issue is here to stay and the evidence will only build with time.

    • your Yahoo ID name focal_neckdown is a dead giveaway you have an axe to grind.

      what rock did you crawl out from under? troll.

      So which company are you valuing at near zero here, are you picking Guidant or Boston Scientific, pre-Guidant? I happen to think they are both worth a lot of money and JNJ thinks so too.
      fool

    • well said.

      some people will never learn.

    • Ad, if experience matters than you should listen to me and stop bs-ing about all your past glories. You are not a distressed investor, that is obvious. You do very little homework and you think you know what you are investing in but you don't. In this business it is not enough to simply say you bought XYZ at this price and presto: look what happened. You get all your purchases and sales audited and the result is usually very different than what people claim. The time frames you use in discussing things paste over any mistakes. Do you think most people would be okay with losing 30-40% of their investment on the hope that it will then rise 50% from its current level in five years? Distressed investors cherry pick at the bottom and this thing is no where near the bottom.

    • BTW, gradprof, you sound very similar to the gang of retards on the ANPI board who called what I was doing "bashing" even though I was completely correct. The record goes back a lot longer than 2006, so research away gradprof. But I don't want to persuade you of anything, so go right ahead and buy up some more BSX before they report this evening.

    • Yes thanks for building my credentials, since the stock I "bashed" was ANPI. Have you looked at chart of that thing since I posted on it?

    • You waste people's time a lot in your regular life, don't you? I can't be bothered repeating to you all of the mistakes you have made in reading the previous posts; just recognize that your reading comprehension sucks. You mistate what was said and draw ridiculous conclusions based on ideas you think you understand. Perhaps you have dyslexia, I don't know, but there were a lot of specifics that you missed and a lot of ideas that completely escaped you. You keep rephrasing and re-characterizing what was written to suit your purposes. Don't assume you know much about behavioral finance or value investing, because it is pretty obvious you don't. Why don't you go buy up another hundred shares and stop cluttering up the board.

    • Clarification of my prior post, WYE had phen-fen (didn't mean to refer to WYE re silicone breast implant litigation--no matter how bad the science behind that litigation.)

      Catheternose has been pointed out on other boards as a multi-named poster/basher. A quick search shows that activity has been going on under this name for all of 2006 at least.

    • You are defeated by your own arguments, vague and threatening as they are. You state that the market has not yet discounted the litigation threat and that you have disclosed it on a Yahoo board. Hah. BSX is $15 per share and has a $22 billion market cap. Two years ago it was a $40 stock and had a $60 billion market cap. So $38 billion has been deducted by the market. The stock is trading lower than what JNJ offered to pay for GDT alone. Then you cite Phen-fen, a $20 billion final cost (litigation and all settlement reserves) for WYE, and yet fail to notice $38 billion has been knocked off BSX. Then you cite silicone breast implants--not even proven to harm women--diabetics get more silicone from the coated needle--but WYE is fine. You cite Vioxx but fail to note that Merck is trading significantly higher after it has lost a couple of suits/won a couple of suits. Then you cite an article by two docs who recommend DES in appropriate patients, recommend DES in patients where BMS have failed, and recommend open heart surgery on those who won't continue to take their Plavix. Good grief. You think HMOs are going to go for that? Here's what's going to happen. Patients will be told to continue the anti-clotting therapy. Maybe that will be delivered in a patch. But you're not going to see a bunch of open heart surgeries (what's that risk of dying?) nor are you going to see a class action allowed because the companies have done nothing wrong. They don't have research that indicates DES are harmful. Quite the contrary. With all of your examples, the alternative to the *harmful* treatment is benign. Fat or phen-fen? Flat or silicone breasts? Tylenol or Vioxx?

      I find it interesting that all you *informed* posters come out of the woodwork on the same day, scream about misconduct on the part of the stent makers, and don't address the market cap penalties already inflicted. Nor can you cite a single study supporting your position and in fact, claim there aren't any studies supporting your position because the stent makers don't want to pay for one.

      Two years from now you will look back at a $15 share price for BSX and wonder why you didn't buy all you could. Especially since you realize that all the other cases didn't come close to the $38 billion hit already reflected in this company's stock.

    • BTW, s for these so called "sharpest analysts" they are always a day late and a dollar short. It is laughable that these most of these guys have jobs.

      What is their value-add anyhow? Do you or I send them a check every month for a job well done?
      And for the record, I have never recalled getting a call from any of my brokers saying "our analyst really likes XYZ and we suggest you buy some of this"
      WHere that happens is anyone's guess?

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