Many Americans suffer from heartburn and the effects of acid reflux. It has been reported by the American College of Gastroenterology that 60 million Americans deal with these issues. With almost 20 percent of the population needing relief, it’s no surprise that drug manufacturers are quick to capitalize on treatment options.
Most people can eliminate their symptoms with a change in diet and learning to manage their stress; however, this takes time and doesn’t always work for everyone.
Medication to relieve these symptoms is widespread. Zantac is one of the leading medications on the market. Still, the FDA recently pulled Zantac and the generic Zantac medications because many people started to develop cancer as a result of taking the drug.
Zantac has been around since 1981 and was the most prominent selling prescription medication for the next seven years. It was eventually released in an over the counter form (Zantac OTC). It was very popular until sales and prescriptions were halted by the FDA.
In September of 2019, the FDA announced that it was investigating the levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), a carcinogenic toxin, which was found in the samples of Zantac and generic Zantac manufacturers. Even in tiny amounts, NDMA is known to cause cancer in humans.
As of April 1, 2020, the FDA ordered all Zantac and generics to be removed from retail stores and halted production. Their study found that the levels of NDMA present in Zantac was 3,000 times higher than what was allowed by the FDA.
The FDA does not have enough evidence to show just how long NDMA has been present in Zantac manufacturing.
If you have been taking Zantac for any amount of time, and have been diagnosed with cancer, then you need to talk to a qualified attorney to help you determine if you are eligible to file a lawsuit.
NDMA and Cancer
Studies done on animals showed that exposure to even low levels of NDMA for a short period (several weeks) produced an environment where lung and liver cancer cells rapidly developed. There was also evidence that other liver damage (non-cancerous) also occurred.
For humans, long term exposure to the NDMA found in Zantac has been shown to cause lung and liver cancer to develop. Along with lung and liver cancer, NDMA exposure is also linked to a variety of other cancers to include:
- Kidney Cancer
- Stomach Cancer
- Intestinal Cancer
- Bladder Cancer
- Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma
- Prostate Cancer
- Pancreatic Cancer
- Throat Cancer
Recognize the Symptoms of Zantac Caused Cancer
If you or a family member have been taking Zantac or ranitidine, it is crucial to be able to recognize the symptoms associated with Zantac caused cancer. While many of the symptoms are related to other cancer causes, identifying them could potentially be lifesaving for you or a loved one. The most common cancer symptoms associated with Zantac include:
- Rapid or unexpected weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Abdominal pain (not connected to heartburn)
- Blood in the stool
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Back pain
- Changes to bowel movements and habits
- An excessive need to urinate
- Painful urination
- Dark urine and/or blood in the urine
- Changes to stool color (light) and texture (greasy)
When you or a family member starts to experience these symptoms, you should contact a doctor immediately. If you have been a regular user of Zantac or ranitidine, the next step would be to contact an attorney with experience filing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit.
When a product violates the FDA regulations, often companies will take it upon themselves to do a voluntary recall of the product. This helps to protect consumers and prevent broader public health issues. When a medication is found to cause harm, it is common for those medications to be recalled. The FDA will monitor recalls regardless of whether the manufacturer does a voluntary recall or it is mandated by the FDA.
Sometimes there will be a bad batch that comes from a specific manufacturer, and a responsible company will issue a recall of their product. The issue with Zantac was that the manufacturer was aware of the risks with their product, yet chose to continue putting those products into retail stores and pharmacies.
There have been a variety of recalls after the 2019 report from the FDA stated NDMA was found in samples. Many manufacturers did a voluntary recall of the product, which included over the counter ranitidine tablets (75 and 150mg) that were distributed by some of the major retail chains (Walgreens, Rite-Aid, and Walmart).
The negligence of the primary manufacturers of Zantac, Sanofi, and Boehringer Ingelheim, was that the companies knew of the harmful levels and chose to conceal these findings to keep Zantac on the shelves and in the pharmacies. These companies enjoyed the profits that made Zantac the first medication to surpass $1 billion in sales, without concerning themselves with the damages being done to those people using the medication regularly.
If you or a loved one took Zantac regularly, even if it was years ago, you need to contact a physician to see if you suffered any ill effects from your exposure to the drug. If you are experiencing any of the Zantac cancer symptoms, make sure to disclose that information to your doctor. They can help you determine if you have any medical issues as a result of taking Zantac.
After talking to a physician, you will want to contact a professional product liability attorney who will help you determine if you are eligible to file a claim. A qualified attorney can help you navigate the complicated process of filing a Zantac cancer lawsuit and ensure that you have the best opportunity to get the compensation you deserve.
Contact us today for your free Zantac cancer lawsuit case evaluation.