Zantac is a medication used to treat stomach problems. While it was one of the leading choices for stomach problems, it is largely off of the market now. This is because the FDA recalled Zantac for possible contamination problems. The U.S.Food & Drug Administration and other research agencies found that Zantac contained NDMA, a chemical and possible carcinogen with no medical uses. Not only was NDMA found in Zantac, but it was found in an amount that was far above the acceptable exposure limit.
With this look at why Zantac was recalled, many people that took Zantac and developed cancer are taking legal action against its manufacturer. If you or a loved one developed cancer after taking Zantac, you could take legal action against the manufacturer and recover compensation for your medical problems. Consult a lawyer to examine your case and decide on the next steps.
Types of Zantac Injuries
Aside from NDMA contamination, Zantac has a list of other possible side effects. This is normal for medications, especially prescription medications. However, it is important to watch for any of the possible side effects as they can develop into more serious conditions. The possible Zantac injuries include:
- Cancer: The NDMA found in Zantac is a possible carcinogen (a chemical that causes cancer), which is why it was pulled from the market. NDMA is an inevitable byproduct of Zantac since the active ingredient breaks down into NGMA over time.
- Ulcers: Consistent exposure to Zantac can irritate the lining of the stomach and create ulcers.
- Jaundice: Jaundice is a disease where a person starts to turn yellow because of a build-up of yellow-orange bile. It usually does not need to be treated, but the underlying cause will need treatment.
- Liver problems: Zantac and irritate the liver, causing it to swell in size. It is uncomfortable and swelling can cause restrictions and blockages if untreated.
- Organ damage: Long-term exposure can cause organ damage that may be irreversible.
- Birth-related problems: NDMA is tested in lab situations where it causes birth defects and stillbirths in test animals.
There are other possible Zantac injuries not covered on this list. Any medical condition that could develop because of medication is serious. Seek medical attention right away to rule out any medications and other possible causes.
When to Seek Legal Action
Seeking legal action against the manufacturer of a medication requires special conditions for the manufacturer to be held responsible. In essence, the conditions require the manufacturer to know or should have known about the potential threat to patients. This is why Zantac was recalled.
Many people believe that the manufacturer of Zantac should have known about the NDMA problem. Since it is a byproduct of Zantac, effective testing strategies should have shown that NDMA was present in the medication. The lawsuits around Zantac will hinge on this fact and there is a lot of effort going into figuring out why the manufacturer did not know or covered up the fact that NDMA naturally exists in Zantac.
Voluntary vs. Mandatory Recall
It is important to note that Zantac was not forced off of shelves by the FDA. There are two types of recalls that the FDA can issue: a voluntary recall or a mandatory recall. A mandatory recall is an order by the FDA to remove a medication from the market. All manufacturers and retailers must comply with the order or face penalties and possible jail time for executives.
In this case, the FDA issued a voluntary recall where it advised the public that there was a problem with Zantac and asked the manufacturer and retailers to stop selling it. Many organizations complied due to the risk to the public. Even the U.S. Army is considering a change because of the voluntary recall. However, it is still possible for retailers to sell Zantac and it is still possible to get a prescription for it.
Severity of Injuries
The severity of the injuries caused by Zantac varies by case. Some people only experience minor problems, and the problems go away over time if they stop taking the medication. However, more serious conditions are possible, which include cancer, ulcers, organ damage, and death. Any conditions that develop that could be related to Zantac should be reviewed by a medical professional as soon as possible. Your physician can help you determine the cause and effective treatment, as well as transition you to another medication to prevent further problems.
The cases against the manufacturer of Zantac are increasing as more people find connections between their medical conditions and taking Zantac. If you or a loved one developed a medical condition after taking Zantac, then you may be able to seek compensation from the manufacturer. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 635-1144 to speak to our legal team regarding your case. The consultation is free and we can help you determine if your Zantac exposure entitles you to compensation.