The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced today, April 1, 2020, that it is requesting drug manufacturers remove all prescription and over-the-counter ranitidine drugs from the market immediately. The brand name for this drug is Zantac, and it is used to treat and prevent heartburn.
The FDA has been investigating a contaminant known as N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) in Zantac and other ranitidine medications. The agency has determined that the level of NDMA in some Zantac products increases over time.
NDMA is likely a human carcinogen, a substance that could cause cancer. The FDA became aware of independent laboratory testing that found NDMA in ranitidine in the summer of 2019. Sustained higher levels of exposure may increase the risk of cancer in humans.
New FDA testing confirmed that NDMA levels increase in ranitidine under normal storage conditions. Worse, NDMA levels increase significantly in samples stored at higher temperatures, including temperatures the product may be exposed to during distribution and handling by consumers. The FDA tests showed that the older a ranitidine product is, or the longer the length of time since it was manufactured, the greater the level of NDMA.
Zantac was the first drug to reach $1 billion in sales. Evidence is being developed that shows Zantac’s manufacturers hid the link between Zantac and cancer.
The FDA is warning consumers to stop taking any tablets or liquid they currently have, dispose of them properly, and not buy more. Because of COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders, the FDA recommends consumers not take their medicines follow the specific disposal instructions in the medication guide or package insert.
If you took Zantac and developed cancer, you should speak with a board-certified personal injury attorney about filing a Zantac lawsuit. To arrange a no-charge consultation, contact us today.