New York's highest court has cleared the way to try billions of dollars in lawsuits over the anti-miscarriage drug DES, and a lawyer said a long legal fight was just beginning.

"We have a long ways to go," said New York City attorney Paul Rheingold, who represents several women who claim they were harmed by the drug in their mother's womb. "But at least the way's been cleared for the 500 women who've filed suits to have their day in court."The Court of Appeals on Tuesday unanimously upheld the state's toxic tort law, under which the women filed their lawsuits. The court also ruled that all companies that made DES for use by pregnant women should be liable for a percentage of any damage awards won by New Yorkers - even companies that never marketed their pills in the state.