Can taking stomach acid-reducing medications like Zantac affect your heart? In studies over the past decade, proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) found in antacid pills and common acid reflux drugs aimed at preventing heartburn were shown to actually have an adverse effect on your heart. Just to be clear, Zantac falls under the category of H2 blocker, not a proton pump inhibitor.
There was a 2011 study published in the British Medical Journal and an accompanying 2013 study published by the American Heart Association showing that proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) under brand names like Prevacid, Prilosec, Nexium, etc. could constrict a person’s blood vessels causing reduced blood flow to the heart. The PPIs were also responsible for increasing the amount of ADMA, which is considered a heart risk factor.
In 2019, a new study in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) showed again that PPIs in antacid drugs may increase the risk of death if a person had previous chronic health conditions. The researchers recommended that heartburn products with PPIs selling over the counter should have usage limits clearly stated and not to exceed 14 days. The study concluded that it was unwise and unsafe for a person to take these drugs over a long period of time.
PPIs to Cancer-Causing Agents
This news comes at the same time that antacid and acid reflux drugs are under sharp scrutiny from federal regulators because of the cancer-causing carcinogens found in ranitidine drugs like Zantac and other generic medications.
Random testing in summer and fall 2019 showed that OTC and prescription heartburn medicines like Zantac and other generic ranitidine medications had very high levels of N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) that were far higher than the top limits for these type of ranitidine capsules.
As a result of these tests, the FDA first asked retailers and doctor’s offices to voluntarily remove Zantac from usage with patients. Then in 2020, the FDA ordered the full recall of Zantac from shelves and for prescriptions. Further testing showed that these high levels of NDMA were being found to contribute to cancer growth in the stomach, bladder, colon, and other intestinal areas.
The recall has led to class-action and individual lawsuits by patients who used Zantac and other ranitidine medications and later received a cancer diagnosis. Legal teams around the world are representing cases involving negligence by Zantac producer Sanofi.
Lawsuits Developing Against Zantac
The negligence lawsuits claim that the drug makers knew about the cancer agents of NDMA in Zantac and ranitidine products but failed to warn consumers. Those who have developed cancer as a result of using these heartburn medications may be eligible for monetary compensation in these cases.
If you feel that you may qualify to be among those to bring a claim against Sanofi, Drugwatch.com recommends that you fit three criteria: 1) you prove that you were routinely and regularly using Zantac; 2) you have since received a diagnosis of cancer; and 3) there is a clear connection to be made between your use of Zantac and your cancer diagnosis.
This clear connection can be made in a few ways. One is that a person can show the connection between the cancer and Zantac use by showing how much Zantac they were prescribed or how much they were taking on a consistent basis. Taking Zantac for a long period of time can also prove the connection between taking Zantac and getting the cancer diagnosis. Finally, taking Zantac for at least a year before getting a cancer diagnosis can also help a person’s claim in court.
Early reports show that the number of cases against Zantac and ranitidine may grow into a large number. There are also current various class action lawsuits in development in Florida, Connecticut, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and other states. Participants in these class action cases only have to prove that they purchased Zantac (showing a receipt) and did not receive any kind of warning about its usage and how it might affect their health. Class action litigants do not have to have cancer for these cases.
Have You Taken Zantac?
Have you taken Zantac in the past for acid reflux issues, or for related heartburn issues? If you have, then it is highly recommended that you stop taking these medications and see a doctor to explore next steps for your gastrointestinal issues.
Zantac and other ranitidine products are now off the market in the United States and other countries. Existing prescriptions should be ended by doctors and unused medication should be disposed of properly.
In addition, if you are asking the question “can Zantac affect your heart?” you may have concerns about other health issues related to the use of Zantac. If you recently received a cancer diagnosis, it may be linked to the use of ranitidine products, including Zantac.
The legal team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm has handled pharmaceutical negligence cases for our clients. We have gone up against some of the biggest drug companies to try to secure financial awards for people who have been innocent victims of taking a certain drug. Contact us today at (800) 635-1144 for a free case evaluation.