The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested that all ranitidine medicines, including Zantac, be taken off the market with immediate effect in a report on April 1st this year. Zantac, a medication commonly used to treat stomach ulcers and heartburn, contains a compound called N- nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). NDMA is classified by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a probable human carcinogen, and if present in high enough levels, the compound could cause cancer.
Current research found that although levels of NDMA may be acceptable during the production of ranitidine medications, the stability of the drug is adversely affected at elevated temperatures routinely reached during shipment. The drug also destabilizes over a period of time during general storage.
When contaminated by environmental conditions, the amount of NDMA present in the medication increases to a point where it becomes a potential health risk to consumers. The Zantac breaks down into carcinogens and exposes consumers to unacceptable levels of probable cancer-causing properties of ranitidine after the drug is ingested.
Health Risks Revealed From Exposure to Dangerous Levels of NDMA in Zantac
The Environmental Protection Agency defines NDMA as a “member of the N-nitrosamines, a family of potent carcinogens.” Zantac contains ranitidine, which becomes unstable over time or at elevated temperatures, and produces high levels of NDMA, resulting in daily users of the medicine being potentially exposed to unacceptable health risks.
Because NDMA is a documented carcinogen, at high levels, it can increase the risk of certain cancers to people who use drugs containing ranitidine over long periods. The chemical, which was once used in the production of rocket fuel, is extremely toxic to the liver and can be linked with causing gastric or colorectal cancer. Other severe side effects from using the drug include:
- Cholestatic hepatitis
- Liver failure
- Abdominal pain
- Extreme fatigue
Over 15 million prescriptions for the heartburn medication are issued each year to age groups ranging from older adults to pregnant mothers and infants, and countless other consumers purchasing the OTC versions. People who took the drug over some time are understandably worried about the implications of Zantac breaking down into a carcinogenic substance and affecting their health.
Current Advice From the FDA If You Take Zantac
In addition to issuing a mandatory recall of all ranitidine medications sold under the brand name of Zantac, current advice from the FDA for consumers taking over the counter (OTC) tablets or liquid forms of the drug is to stop taking it and abstain from purchasing more.
Furthermore, they urge customers to dispose of any existing Zantac product by following the FDA guidelines for safe disposal of unused medicines, or the disposal instructions on the medication guide.
People who want to continue managing their condition with OTC treatments should consider other heartburn medications that do not contain ranitidine. All forms of ranitidine medication are affected by the action. For patients who take prescription ranitidine, however, the FDA advised consulting with their doctor or chosen healthcare professional about alternative treatments before stopping the medicine.
If you noticed any unusual symptoms that could be related to cancer, such as unexplained weight loss, blood in vomit or stool, abdominal pain, loss of appetite, and excessive weakness or fatigue, contact your doctor for peace of mind, and to rule out anything sinister.
Finding Legal Intervention for Zantac Lawsuit
Lawyers who lead the charge in Zantac and ranitidine lawsuits claim the medications pose a serious health risk to consumers due to them containing unacceptable levels of the documented carcinogen NDMA.
The central injuries associated with daily use of the heartburn medication include stomach, liver, and bladder cancer amongst the already extensive list of illnesses being attributed to the drug.
Furthermore, it is claimed that while Zantac producers Sanofi, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, knew about the dangers of NDMA, they failed to adequately warn the American public of the health risks involved with its long term use.
Ranitidine Cancer Attorneys Can Help
If you received a diagnosis of any cancer and take Zantac regularly, contact the responsive and compassionate team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm and discuss your case in a free evaluation at (800) 794-0444 today.
We will represent your best interests in a lawsuit against negligent Big Pharma companies who knowingly continued to manufacture drugs like Zantac, which harms consumers, without regard for their health or their right to be properly informed of the risks involved with daily use of the treatments.