Wyeth has been ordered to pay some $5.5 million dollars in damaged after a jury ruled that the company’s withdrawn diet drug, Pondmin (fenfluramine), caused heart valve damage in two court cases.

Specifically, the firm has been ordered to pay Camille Olsen $500,000, while Isabel Vega is set to receive $5 million. In a statement, Lawrence Stein, Wyeth’s general counsel said: “The amounts awarded in these cases are grossly excessive and unsupported by the evidence.” These cases will now move to the second, liability phase of the trial, which is scheduled to start on Monday.

However, the firm did have some cause for celebration after the jury found in the US firm’s favour in two other cases. These two cases are now concluded.

Thus far, Wyeth has thus far placed some $21 billion into its legal reserves [[19/01/05b]], [[01/02/05a]]. Last month, a judge gave the green light to an amendment to a new claims processing structure, which means that the least serious claimants will be entitled to a share of a $1.275 billion dollar fund once they pass a medical review [[16/03/05b]].