It is important to note that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) did not find all ranitidine contaminated with NDMA. Ranitidine is at the center of ongoing research and the FDA’s decision to remove Zantac from the U.S. market. The growing concern is that research shows that ranitidine creates NDMA—a possible carcinogen—as it breaks down through digestion or aging. Being cautious, the FDA has issued a voluntary recall to the general public.
However, the findings of the FDA’s research and research conducted by other organizations showed a connection between ranitidine and NDMA. Furthermore, taking ranitidine medications does not always result in high levels of NDMA in the body.
Dangers of Contaminated Ranitidine
The dangers of consuming NDMA-contaminated ranitidine include:
- Cancer: NDMA is a possible carcinogen. It has been linked to multiple forms of cancer developing along the digestive system.
- Organ damage: NDMA can also cause damage to organs that it comes in contact with. If untreated, organ damage can lead to organ failure or long-term impairments.
- Liver disease: Liver disease is a condition where the liver is partially impaired and doesn’t work as efficiently as it should. It can become a chronic condition if the damage is extensive.
- Kidney disease: Kidney disease is a condition where kidneys lose some of their functionality. The damage may become permanent if the underlying cause is not addressed.
There are many other conditions that contaminated ranitidine can cause that are not covered on this list. If you experience serious adverse effects while on a ranitidine medication, consult your doctor immediately. Some these conditions may be reversed if proper intervention and treatment are offered. It may also be possible to transition you to another medication to relieve the symptoms.
The FDA issued a voluntary recall of Zantac and other products containing ranitidine. However, this does not eliminate the drug manufacturers’ responsibility for selling an unsafe product. According to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, the school’s research corroborated the FDA’s finding of the possible dangers of NDMA in ranitidine and recommends patients stop taking it. If you or a loved one developed one of these cancers and have a history of taking ranitidine, you could hold the manufacturer of the drug responsible.
In many cases, you will need to have some way to prove that you took the medication. This can be difficult as your exposure to ranitidine from many years or decades ago could impact your cancer risk. Generally, you will need receipts from buying over-the-counter Zantac, prescriptions, or a doctor’s note that shows that you took the medication. If you have questions about how to gather this information, you can talk to a personal injury lawyer about how to get it. They can help you.
Class-Action Lawsuits vs. Personal Injury Cases
In cases where a medication is the cause of an injury, the victims can file personal injury lawsuits. Personal injury cases are civil cases where a victim sues the person or entity (i.e. businesses and organizations) that are responsible. The lawsuit is designed to seek compensation for expenses caused by the injury.
In cases like the Zantac recall, the legal system may decide that a class-action lawsuit is more appropriate. A class-action lawsuit is a type of personal injury lawsuit where all of the individual personal injury cases are combined into a single case. The group of victims sues the company that manufactured Zantac.
Class-action lawsuits may be a better option for all parties involved. The victims can pool their resources to sue a larger, well-funded, and well-protected entity. The company can focus its efforts on a single case rather than addressing hundreds or thousands of smaller cases that are still expensive to handle. The legal system can avoid a massive backlog of very similar, if not the same, lawsuits that could take years or decades to clear.
Settlement vs. Trial
Many pharmaceutical class-action lawsuits end in settlements, as opposed to courtroom trials. Generally, drug companies want to avoid the negative publicity surrounding a courtroom trial. However, in the event that a trial becomes necessary, a personal injury lawyer is prepared to represent you and other members of the class-action lawsuit if necessary.
Call to Schedule a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer after taking ranitidine, you could be eligible for compensation. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 794-0444 to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team. We can discuss your potential legal case and answer any questions that you may have about your options for legal recourse.
Although you can pursue compensation without the help of a lawyer, hiring representation may be helpful as you deal with your medical issues. A lawyer can take care of the difficult tasks needed for the case if your ranitidine was contaminated.