Zantac is a popular antacid that has recently been recalled by over a dozen pharmaceutical companies after a cancer-causing chemical called NDMA was found in certain drug batches. Zantac is a brand name for the generic drug, ranitidine, which works in the body by reducing the production of stomach acid.
Conditions commonly treated with Zantac include:
- acid reflux
- gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Zollinger-Ellison syndrome
Recent lawsuits filed against the manufacturers of Zantac allege that the NDMA in Zantac caused people to develop cancer, as the amount of NDMA found in Zantac far exceeds the FDA-recommended daily limit.
The FDA and legal professionals across the country are currently investigating several aspects of this public health concern, including the dangers posed by the NDMA in Zantac, how many people might have been affected, and whether the manufacturers of Zantac were aware of the NDMA in their drugs prior to marketing them.
If you or a loved one in Minnesota has been diagnosed with cancer after regularly taking Zantac, the lawyers of Florin|Roebig can determine your eligibility to file a lawsuit against Zantac drugmakers.
Zantac (Ranitidine) Recalls: What To Know
In September 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration—the federal agency in charge of evaluating drug safety—released a public statement alerting doctors and patients of a discovered NDMA contamination in certain Zantac and generic ranitidine products.
The FDA has not issued a mandatory recall of Zantac. However, multiple Zantac manufacturers, pharmacies, and drugstores across the U.S. have voluntarily recalled Zantac products to prevent further exposure to the cancer-causing chemical while the dangers of the NDMA in Zantac continue to be investigated.
If you’ve taken Zantac regularly for a health condition, or have a family member who has, here is the most important information to know about the recent Zantac recalls.
Why Was Zantac Recalled?
The popular heartburn drug, Zantac, has been voluntarily recalled by its main manufacturers after laboratory testing found dangerous levels of a cancerous chemical (NDMA) in Zantac and generic ranitidine products. Ranitidine is the active ingredient in brand-name Zantac drugs.
This concern was first discovered by the pharmaceutical research company, Valisure, which discovered the NDMA in Zantac during routine testing of their ranitidine products in June 2019. Testing showed amounts of NDMA in Zantac that were over 31,000 times higher than the FDA-recommended daily limit.
Although the company’s testing methods have since been criticized by the FDA as inefficient, Zantac testing by other researchers—including researchers from the FDA—has still consistently found levels of NDMA in Zantac determined to be “unacceptable” and unsafe for consumer use.
The discovery of NDMA in Zantac has been deemed a public health concern for several reasons. First, the presence of NDMA in Zantac, and its associated health risks, were not clearly listed by the drugmakers on the products’ warning labels. This is a consumer protection violation.
Secondly, NDMA is classified as a probable human carcinogen capable of causing various types of cancer through long-term overexposure.
Worldwide health agencies have been recalling ranitidine and Zantac drugs in their respective countries to further investigate the dangers of the NDMA found in Zantac. Prior to these recalls, Zantac was one of the world’s most widely used drugs, taken by millions of people in any given year.
What Is NDMA In Zantac?
N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) is a probable human carcinogen that occurs naturally and can also be manufactured through industrial processes. The chemical was formerly used as an ingredient in rocket fuel before it was found to very easily contaminate the water, air, and soil of areas surrounding its production.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports a whole host of environmental and human health concerns that can occur through overexposure to NDMA. Overexposure refers to any level of exposure to the chemical that exceeds the FDA-recommended daily limit of 96 nanograms.
According to ample research on the effects of NDMA in animals and humans, overexposure to NDMA may cause liver disease, reduced kidney function, enlarged liver, internal bleeding, and various cancers.
Symptoms of overexposure to NDMA include:
- jaundice (yellow skin and eyes)
- nausea and vomiting
- stomach cramps
The primary population of people at risk for concerning symptoms and side effects of NDMA exposure after taking Zantac are those who have taken the drug long-term for months or years.
Ingesting low doses of NDMA is unlikely to cause significant health concerns, as a chemical that can commonly be found in products ranging from bacon, to smoked meats, certain cosmetic products, and pesticides.
Types Of Cancer Linked To Zantac
The chemical, NDMA, has been linked to various cancers that affect thousands of people in the United States each year.
The primary types of cancer linked to NDMA in Zantac include:
- kidney cancer
- stomach cancer
- liver cancer
- lung cancer
- bladder cancer
- breast cancer
- colorectal cancer
- esophageal cancer
- cancer of the blood
How Many People Are Affected By The Zantac Recalls?
It’s uncertain at this time how many people may be affected by the NDMA found in Zantac. While a single dose of Zantac is unlikely to significantly increase a person’s risk for cancer, long-term exposure to excessive amounts of NDMA may have put a large number of people at risk for severe health issues, including liver disease, kidney damage, and cancer.
In the United States alone, an estimated 15 million prescriptions are written for Zantac each year, and millions more have likely taken another prescription or over-the-counter ranitidine product.
Scientific and medical experts are investigating the scope of how many people are at risk for cancer after taking Zantac and how many people have already developed cancer as a direct result of taking Zantac for a long-term health condition.
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Zantac Drug Manufacturer Liability
Before selling any pharmaceutical product in the United States, drug manufacturers are required to subject their drugs to extensive research and testing in order to determine the potential use of their drug, side effects, and other drug interactions.
Although Zantac (ranitidine) gained FDA approval for use in the U.S. in 1983, multiple studies since have pointed to potential risks with taking the drug, including evidence that the chemical structure of ranitidine may generate dangerous amounts of NDMA in the body following digestion.
Drug manufacturers are required to provide a comprehensive list of side effects on the warning labels of their drugs and provide notice to the government of all health risks. Prior to this recent discovery of NDMA in Zantac, the manufacturers of these drugs had not issued any warning about the potential link between use of their drugs and risk for cancer.
As a result of this failure to properly warn the government and broader public of the NDMA in their drugs, Zantac manufacturers may be held liable for resulting injuries (i.e. cancer) or wrongful death.
Over a dozen manufacturers have recalled their Zantac and ranitidine products in the United States. The most prominent of these pharmaceutical companies are now being named in the many Zantac lawsuits being filed in Minnesota and across the U.S.
Primary manufacturers named as defendants in recent Zantac lawsuits include:
- Sanofi U.S.
- Sanofi-Aventis U.S. LLC
- Boehringer Ingelheim
- Chattem, Inc.
Types Of Zantac Lawsuits In Minnesota
Individuals in Minnesota and across the nation are filing lawsuits against the manufacturers of Zantac on the grounds of:
- personal injury
- product liability
- wrongful death
Based on the details of each person’s case, there may be certain benefits to be gained from filing an individual lawsuit or joining a class action to seek compensation.
Multidistrict Litigation Vs. Class Action: What Are The Differences?
Filing an individual lawsuit against Zantac drugmakers in Minnesota might group your case into a procedure known as multidistrict litigation, which brings various individual lawsuits against the same defendants together to present to a single court. This accelerates the management of cases that are complex and have affected a large number of people.
Class action lawsuits represent groups of people who have been similarly harmed by a person, product, or service. Unlike multidistrict lawsuits, however, class actions negotiate a single settlement amount to be equally distributed among the class (group) of plaintiffs.
In multidistrict litigation, each plaintiff retains the ability to negotiate their own settlement amount with their attorney and can sue for losses that are specific to their own case.
For instance, if you’re planning to sue Zantac drugmakers on account of the wrongful death of a loved one who took Zantac, it might not be as beneficial for you to join a class action of plaintiffs who are suing for personal injury. Filing an individual lawsuit would likely allow you to seek greater compensation to match the extent of your losses.
The best way to determine which path you should take in seeking justice for Zantac-related personal injury is to speak to an experienced dangerous drug lawyer.
Top-Rated Zantac Minnesota Lawyers
At Florin|Roebig, our lawyers have extensive experience handling complex cases against powerful companies who have violated consumer protection laws and put the public at risk for harm.
We have been following the latest updates on Zantac recalls and have the skills and resources necessary to fight for compensation on your behalf and provide aggressive legal representation.
Since 1985, our lawyers have secured over $1 billion in results for clients nationwide, with a strong team of dangerous drug lawyers based out of our office in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Based on the details of your case, our Zantac lawyers can help you seek compensation for the following losses:
- past and future medical expenses
- money spent on Zantac
- pain and suffering costs
- loss of enjoyment of life
- loss of companionship
- lost wages
- loss of earning capacity
- funeral and burial costs
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Find Help Filing A Zantac Lawsuit In Minnesota
Living with cancer is one of the most difficult hardships a person can face, and there’s no reason that the use of any FDA-approved drug should put a person at increased risk for suffering this disease.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer after taking Zantac, the Minnesota lawyers of Florin|Roebig are on your side. We’ll determine your entitled compensation based on the details of your case and help you seek justice for being unknowingly exposed to a potentially cancerous drug.
Don’t wait to take legal action. Call us today to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our award-winning Zantac Minnesota lawyers.