By the end of September 2019, multiple pharmacy chains pulled Zantac and other ranitidine products from their shelves. The pharmacies, including Walgreens, Rite Aid, and CVS, opted to remove Zantac and ranitidine medications from their stores because of a warning announced by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) earlier in the month.
The FDA warned the public about the detection of unsafe levels of a cancer-causing substance in ranitidine products. Although the FDA did not formally recall Zantac or other ranitidine products, the pharmacies decided that selling the medication wasn’t worth the risk.
If you use Zantac, consult with your doctor and consider switching to another medication. Due to the discovery of NDMA in ranitidine, several lawsuits have been filed in Louisiana and various states across the country.
What To Know About Zantac Lawsuits
Zantac or ranitidine lawsuits allege that unsafe levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) in the medication can increase the risk of cancer. This chemical was first discovered in ranitidine in September 2019 by an online pharmacy called Valisure.
Valisure eventually alerted the FDA of its findings. In mid-September 2019, the FDA warned the public. The FDA announcement prompted multiple pharmaceutical companies to issue recalls on their products, which in turn led to multiple lawsuits being filed against drug manufacturers.
Zantac is a popular medication that was thought to be safe for decades. Zantac (generic name ranitidine) is an H-2 blocker that works by decreasing acid in the stomach. The medication is available both over-the-counter and as a prescription.
Zantac is commonly used for treating or preventing:
- Zollinger-Ellison syndrome
- peptic ulcer disease
- gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Is There A Zantac Recall?
Instead of recalling all Zantac or ranitidine products, the FDA issued a warning and recommendation to pharmaceutical manufacturers to test their own products and voluntarily recall any medication that contained levels of NDMA.
This means that drug manufacturers ultimately decide whether to remove ranitidine from the market. While the FDA is urging people to consult with their healthcare providers about changing medications, they have not made Zantac recalls mandatory.
List Of Manufacturers Who Issued Zantac Recalls
Although pharmaceutical companies aren’t required to recall their ranitidine products, over a dozen drug manufacturers have issued voluntary recalls. Nearly all recalls are the result of tests that show Zantac and other ranitidine products are contaminated with NDMA.
Here are the manufacturers who issued Zantac recalls:
- American Health Packaging (ranitidine tablets USP 150mg, ranitidine liquid unit dose cups)
- Northwind Pharmaceuticals (ranitidine tablets 150mg and 300 mg)
- Appco Pharma (ranitidine tablets 150mg and 300mg)
- Glenmark Pharmaceuticals (ranitidine tablets 150mg and 300mg)
- Amneal Pharmaceuticals (ranitidine tablets 150mg and 300 mg, ranitidine syrup 15mg/mL)
- PrecisionDose (ranitidine oral solution, USP 150 mg/10mL)
- GSMS Incorporated (ranitidine HCI 150mg and 300mg capsules)
- Aurobindo Pharma (ranitidine)
- Novitium Pharma (ranitidine HCI capsules 150mg and 300 mg)
- Lannett Company Inc. (ranitidine syrup 15mg/mL)
- Dr. Reddy’s, Kroger, Walgreens, and others (ranitidine tablets and capsules)
- Perrigo Company (all pack sizes of ranitidine)
- Apotex Corp. (ranitidine tablets 75mg and 150mg)
- Sandoz Inc. (ranitidine HCI capsules)
Who Are The Defendants In Zantac Lawsuits?
Although litigation is just getting started, multiple defendants have been named in Zantac lawsuits. The defendants in Zantac litigation are pharmaceutical manufacturers who failed to warn and protect consumers from NDMA and the risk of cancer.
Named defendants in current Zantac lawsuits includes:
- Chattem Inc.
- Sanofi-Aventis U.S. LLC
- Sanofi U.S. Services
- Boehringer Ingelheim
Zantac Lawsuit Damages And Compensation
Anyone with cancer knows how expensive medical costs can be. From radiation to chemotherapy and medications, cancer-related costs can be overwhelming. If you developed cancer after taking Zantac, you may be entitled to collect damages, or monetary compensation, to help you recover from your loss or injury.
Although each claim varies, you may be able to collect damages and compensation for:
- medical bills related to cancer treatment and recovery
- lost wages from missing work or the capacity to earn
- pain and suffering caused by your illness or injury
- loss of enjoyment
- punishing pharmaceutical companies for their negligence (punitive damages)
The Scope Of Zantac Litigation
Legal experts believe that thousands of people may qualify for filing a Zantac lawsuit. It’s estimated that Zantac is prescribed over 15 million times each year. The medication was routinely used by people who experienced heartburn, and consumers had easy access to Zantac OTC and additional ranitidine products that didn’t require a prescription.
It’s unclear how many people with cancer will connect the dots to their Zantac use and cancer diagnosis. There have been so many individual Zantac claims to date that the cases are being consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL), which can speed up the settlement process.
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Zantac (Ranitidine) Cancer Concerns
Experts suspect the number of Zantac lawsuits will increase because of the connection between ranitidine and cancer. Ranitidine is associated with cancer because of detected levels of NDMA, a potentially cancer-causing chemical, in the medication.
NDMA, and by extension Zantac, is linked to the following primary cancers:
- pancreatic cancer
- bladder cancer
- esophageal cancer
- lung cancer
- stomach cancer
- liver cancer
- colorectal cancer
- blood-related cancers
NDMA And The Risk For Cancer
N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) is classified as a probable human carcinogen, which means it’s a substance that could cause cancer in humans. The chemical is an environmental contaminant that is found in water and foods like cured meats and dairy products. The levels of NDMA found in foods are thought to be safe for human consumption.
On the other hand, the detected levels of NDMA in ranitidine far exceed the safe daily intake recommended by the FDA, which is 96 nanograms. When Valisure first conducted tests on ranitidine, they detected 2,511,469 ng of NDMA in one over-the-counter Zantac tablet.
This is concerning because the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry believes that exposure to NDMA can cause cancer in humans. While the agency points out that there is little evidence supporting NDMA causing cancer in humans, studies involving lab animals show that long-term exposure to NDMA damages organs, leads to cancer, and can result in death.
Valsartan Vs. Zantac Litigation
Zantac and ranitidine are not the only medications associated with NDMA and cancer. In July 2018, several batches of the blood-pressure medication valsartan were voluntarily recalled because of unsafe levels of NDMA. Like Zantac lawsuits, a series of individual claims were filed and eventually consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL).
However, valsartan lawsuits are fundamentally different than Zantac lawsuits. Valsartan lawsuits alleged that NDMA contaminated the medication due to a faulty manufacturing process. Zantac lawsuits, however, allege that the chemical structure of ranitidine is directly linked to the formation of NDMA.
How To Qualify For A Zantac Lawsuit
To find out if you qualify for a Zantac lawsuit, it’s best to consult with an experienced lawyer. A lawyer can help you determine if taking legal action is in your best interest. If you developed cancer and have taken Zantac in the past, you may be eligible to file a claim.
To file a Zantac lawsuit, you’ll need to meet three qualifying conditions:
- you took Zantac or ranitidine
- you have a cancer diagnosis
- there is a link between your cancer diagnosis and Zantac use
Proving Zantac Use
To prove you took the medication, you can show medical records that detail proof of prescription. If you took Zantac over-the-counter, you must show a receipt, a doctor’s note, or other evidence that shows you took the medication.
Proving Cancer Diagnosis
Plaintiffs in current Zantac lawsuits use cancer as their primary injury. For your case to be considered, you must be diagnosed with a cancer that’s associated with NDMA. The primary cancers listed on this page, as well as others, are linked to NDMA. You can use your medical records from your diagnosis to prove this element.
Connecting Zantac Use With Cancer Diagnosis
A lawyer will be invaluable to help you prove this final element. Lawyers involved in existing Zantac litigation suggest that if you took Zantac for at least one year before you were diagnosed with the cancer, then a connection can be established. The dose of Zantac you took may also contribute to establishing a connection.
Types Of Zantac Lawsuits In Louisiana
Zantac lawsuits include plaintiffs who have developed cancer and other severe health effects, as well as plaintiffs who haven’t gotten sick. Which type of lawsuit you file will depend on the specific details of your claim. Once you reach out to a lawyer, they can help you decide which type of lawsuit you should file in Louisiana.
Louisiana Zantac Personal Injury Lawsuits
Personal injury lawsuits are likely to make up the bulk of Zantac-related claims. These lawsuits seek to collect damages for a cancer diagnosis that was the result of a negligent party, which in this case are the various drugmakers of Zantac and ranitidine.
Your lawyer may opt to prove negligence by claiming drug manufacturers failed to warn of the associated risk for cancer, or because they put an inherently flawed medication on the market that had a defective design.
Louisiana Zantac Wrongful Death Claims
A wrongful death claim is a type of personal injury lawsuit. For these claims, your lawyer will establish that your loved one passed away from cancer that was connected to Zantac use. Your lawyer will argue that the drugmaker’s negligence contributed to their death.
Louisiana Zantac Class Action Lawsuits
Unlike personal injury lawsuits, class action lawsuits are filed on behalf of plaintiffs who have not been diagnosed with cancer. A class action lawsuit, which combines similar cases into one lawsuit, can only seek compensatory damages for money spent on Zantac or ranitidine.
There are currently several Zantac class action lawsuits in progress. These cases only have to prove that plaintiffs purchased the drug and were never warned about the associated risks. If you have cancer you believe was caused by Zantac, your claim may eventually join multidistrict litigation.
Zantac Multidistrict Litigation (MDL)
More than a dozen Zantac-related lawsuits have been consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL) in Florida. MDL speeds up legal processes by consolidating similar cases into one court. With one judge overseeing multiple cases, MDL expedites discovery and pretrial proceedings.
Once the Zantac MDL moves forward, it will help to establish future settlements. MDL also allows for thousands of more Zantac-related claims to join the litigation. Legal experts agree that the Zantac MDL is expected to grow as more people file lawsuits.
Zantac Lawyers Serving Louisiana And The U.S.
There is no excuse for a medication like Zantac to be linked with cancer, and a qualified lawyer can hold negligent pharmaceutical companies legally responsible. At Florin|Roebig, our team of lawyers are experienced in dangerous drug lawsuits and can help you establish the merits of your case.
Our team of Zantac lawyers includes:
- Wil H. Florin, B.C.S.
- Tommy D. Roebig, B.C.S.
- Chase P. Florin, B.C.S.
- Shaun M. Cummings
- Luca G. Esposito
- Chad K. Florin, M.B.A., LL.M.
- Nicholas S. Costantino
- Michael A. Ossi, O.C.
- Lawrence J. Najem, O.C.
- Andrew M. Leone, O.C.
- Nollys R. Solarte, O.C.
- Brian R. Dettman, O.C.
We Are Nationally Awarded Lawyers
Contact Florin|Roebig Today
Our multi-state law firm serves plaintiffs in states all over the country, including Louisiana. If you developed cancer after taking Zantac, do not hesitate to file a legal claim. Since you may be unsure if filing a lawsuit is worthwhile, we offer free case evaluations to help move your case forward.
To start your free case evaluation, or to learn more about Zantac lawsuits in Louisiana, contact the offices of Florin|Roebig today.