The FDA has warned that some ranitidine medicines, including products known as Zantac, contain a substance that could cause cancer.

 What You Need to Know

The FDA has learned that some ranitidine medicines, including Zantac, contain unacceptable levels of N-nirtosodimethylamine (NDMA).

People exposed to NDMA may be at an increased risk for digestive tract cancers.

Some ranitidine products have been recalled and large retailers, such as Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, and Rite-Aid, have pulled ranitidine medicines from their shelves.

How Can We Help

If you used heartburn medications and have been diagnosed with a form of digestive tract cancer, you may have a legal claim. If you would like more information about your legal options or would like to talk with a lawyer experienced in this litigation, please give us a call at 1.800.887.8029 or fill out our free case review form on the right side of this page.  All consultations are free and confidential.

Background

Ranitidine, which is more commonly known as Zantac, is a medication that is available in over-the-counter and prescription form. Over-the-counter Ranitidine is approved to prevent and relieve heartburn. Prescription Ranitidine is approved to treat and prevent ulcers of the stomach and intestines. On September 13, 2019 the FDA announced that some ranitidine medicines may contain the impurity NDMA, which is classified as a probable human carcinogen.

Reports indicate that individuals who consume unacceptable amounts of NDMA may be at risk of being diagnosed with the following cancers:

  • Stomach Cancer
  • Small Intestine Cancer
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Esophgeal Cancer
  • Liver Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Multiple Myeloma

Following the FDA’s initial announcement, several ranitidine products were recalled, including some products that tested positive for NDMA.  Below is summary of events following the FDA’s initial announcement:

  • September 13, 2019 – The FDA released a statement alerting patients and health care professionals of NDMA found in samples of ranitidine.
  • September 24, 2019 – Sandoz Inc., voluntarily recalled 14 lots of prescription ranitidine capsules after confirming the presence of NDMA.
  • September 25, 2019 – Apotex Corp, which manufactures ranitidine labeled by Walgreens, Walmart and Rite-Aid, voluntarily recalled all 75mg and 150mg over-the-counter ranitidine tablets.
  • September 28, 2019 – October 2, 2019 Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and Kroger all announced they were stopping the sale of Zantac and all generic versions of ranitidine.
  • October 2, 2019 – FDA confirmed that, “To date, the agency’s early, limited testing has found unacceptable levels of NDMA in samples of ranitidine.”

In the News

September 30, 2019: Zantac Pulled From Shelves by Walgreens, Rite Aid and CVS Over Carcinogen Fears, nytimes.com

October 2, 2019: FDA now says impurity level in Zantac and other antacids is too high, fiercepharma.com

October 2, 2019: Walmart suspends sale of Zantac, other products containing ranitidine over cancer risk, foxbusiness.com

Talk To A Lawyer

If you or a family member was diagnosed with cancer while taking Zantac or any medication containing ranitidine, you may be entitled to compensation.  Complete a free case review form on the right side of this webpage or call 1.800.887.8029 for a free and confidential conversation.

Other fda notes

RECOMMENDATION: The FDA is not calling for individuals to stop taking ranitidine at this time; however, patients taking prescription ranitidine who wish to discontinue use should talk to their health care professional about other treatment options. People taking OTC ranitidine could consider using other OTC medicines approved for their condition. There are multiple drugs on the market that are approved for the same or similar uses as ranitidine. To report an issue to the FDA, click here.