Zantac Cancer Lawsuits

FDA recalls the antacid drug after tests show it may contain cancer-causing chemicals.

Zantac, also known by its generic name ranitidine, is a popular histamine-blocking medication used to treat a range of digestive acid conditions from heartburn to ulcers and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

zantac cancer lawsuit

Zantac Recalled Over Cancer Risks

Zantac was first introduced in the United States in 1983 and became one of the most widely-used medications in history, with as many as 16 million annual prescriptions in recent years. 

Unfortunately, however, experts have discovered increasing amounts of a contaminant called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) in many formulations of Zantac that may be a cause of cancer in humans. 

The FDA first identified the Zantac NDMA risks in late summer of 2019. In the months that followed, they asked each manufacturer to test their ranitidine supplies and recall any affected batches. 

Then, on April 1, 2020, with evidence mounting that NDMA levels in remaining batches of Zantac could increase as the drugs sat in storage, the FDA took the drastic step of recalling every box of Zantac sold in the U.S. to protect consumers. 

The FDA also warned patients to “stop taking any tablets or liquid they currently have, dispose of them properly and not buy more.”

Now, as questions mount over whether Zantac makers knew for years that patients may face cancer risks from NDMA, lawyers are helping anyone diagnosed with cancer after taking Zantac file lawsuits.

Do You Qualify for a Lawsuit?

Although it’s too early to tell what types of cancer may be caused by NDMA contaminants in Zantac, early tests suggest the chemical may increase cancer risks in several different organs. 

So far, forms of NDMA have been linked to:

  • Liver cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Esophageal cancer.

Anyone who has taken Zantac is urged to see their doctor regularly and monitor for any symptoms of cancer. 

If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer after taking Zantac, you may qualify for substantial compensation from a lawsuit against the manufacturer. 

It’s important to speak with an attorney as soon as possible after your diagnosis, as there’s a limit on how long you have to file a claim. 

Contact us today to speak directly with an attorney at no cost to learn more about whether you qualify for a Zantac lawsuit and what help may be available. 

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Zantac Lawsuit Timeline

Litigation Update for Zantac

FDA issues full recall of Zantac, ordering all manufacturers to remove all prescription and over-the-counter ranitidine drugs from the market immediately after new tests show NDMA levels can increase over time and when stored at higher than room temperatures.
Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation reports the Zantac MDL court already has 144 pending cases with new claims growing quickly.
Judicial Panel on Multidistrict litigation consolidates all Zantac cancer lawsuits to MDL 2924 in the Southern District of Florida under the direction of U.S. District Judge Robin Rosenberg.
Sanofi issues recall of over the counter Zantac sold in the United States and Canada, citing "inconsistencies in preliminary test results."
Store brand versions of ranitidine labeled by Walgreens, Walmart, CVS, Target, and Kroger are recalled by manufacturer Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories due to levels of NDMA.
Major pharmacy chains CVS and Walgreens remove Zantac and generic ranitidine from their shelves over NDMA cancer concerns.
Sandoz issues recall of generic versions of Zantac due to contamination of cancer causing NDMA.
CVS Pharmacy, Walgreens and Walmart announce they will no longer sell Zantac and other over-the-counter ranitidine drugs due to concerns they might contain NDMA.
FDA first warns of preliminary findings of low levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) in Zantac and other forms of ranitidine.
Pharmacy company Valisure detects “extremely high” levels of more than 3 million nanograms of NDMA per tablet in Zantac - far exceeding the FDA’s permissible daily intake of 96 nanograms.
A Stanford University study finds patients taking just 150 milligrams of Zantac developed NDMA urine levels exceeding 47,000 nanograms, with actual amounts in the stomach likely much higher.
A study of peptic ulcer patients finds those taking either Zantac or Tagamet antacids had an increased risk of bladder cancer.

 Did Zantac Makers Know the Cancer Risks?

With growing Zantac warnings and eventual recall, many patients wondered if the drug maker knew about the risks before and why they weren’t warned sooner.

Now, information has surfaced suggesting the manufacturer knew for decades that Zantac may contain dangerous levels of NDMA, but did nothing to protect consumers until forced to take action by the FDA.

Even before Zantac was approved for sale in the U.S., a 1981 study from Italy showed potential cancer risks. By raising gut bacteria, doctors found, Zantac can transform nitrates into nitrites, which can then morph into cancer-causing chemicals called nitrosamines, including NDMA.  

Researchers notified the original manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, of these findings, but the company argued that patients wouldn’t have enough of these chemicals in their diets to form carcinogens. They later told the FDA that Zantac would only be used short-term, therefor any substantial cancer risks would be eliminated. 

As it turned out, many of the 16 million annual prescriptions of Zantac were for long term use. 

Then, in 2004, a study of patients taking Zantac or Tagamet antacids for peptic ulcers found they had an increased risk of bladder cancer. 

Finally, even if the manufacturer missed these prior warnings, a 2016 Stanford University study discovered patients taking just 150 milligrams of Zantac had NDMA urine levels 500 times the safe level recommended by the FDA. 

Zantac Side Effects

Until last year, when the FDA issued a warning about potential dangerous levels of cancer-causing NDMA in Zantac, the drug’s warning label only listed mild side effects such as:

  • Hives or rash
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Swelling of the face or throat
  • Nausea or loss of appetite
  • Jaundice or dark urine
  • Fever, chills, cough
  • Chest pain
  • Irregular heart rate
  • Bruising or bleeding
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness or tiredness
  • Insomnia
  • Diarrhea or constipation.

Now, patients who took Zantac are alerted that they may be at risk for certain types of cancer. So far, experts haven’t determined all the cancers that may be associated with NDMA. However, the following types have already been linked to the chemical:

  • Liver cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Esophageal cancer.

If you or a family member took Zantac, it is important to monitor for symptoms of these or any other types of cancer.

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Choosing a Zantac Lawyer

If you or a loved one were diagnosed with any form of cancer after taking Zantac, you may qualify for substantial financial compensation from a lawsuit. 

Fortunately, it’s rather simple to start the legal process, and most aspects can be handled from the comfort of your home.  

Our qualified Zantac lawyers will fully investigate your case with a review of your medical and pharmacy records, uncovering details your doctor might not normally discuss with you. They’ll then use the latest research and medical experts to file a defective drug claim against the manufacturer.  

DrugNews works only with attorneys and law firms that have successfully handled thousands of pharmaceutical injury lawsuits against the biggest companies. And, we make it easy to speak directly with a lawyer or patient advocate to learn about your legal options. 

You can discuss your case, find out if you qualify, and file a claim all within a few days. Plus, you won’t pay anything unless you receive an award.  

For more information, or to learn how we can help - call, chat or email us today.

Do you have a case?

Speak with a lawyer who specializes in the Zantac cancer litigation.

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