What is Zantac?
Before getting into the details of the recall, let’s take a look at what Zantac is as well as the recent findings concerning its health risks.
Zantac was developed by Glaxo Laboratories (now GlaxoSmithKline) and it became available commercially in 1981. Since then, the Pzifer, Johnson & Johnson, Boehringer and Sanofi have taken over the over the counter rights.
Zantac is the trade name for ranitidine hydrochloride. It is classified as a histamine-2 blocker. It is designed to decrease the production of stomach acid and it is mainly used to treat gastrointestinal issues. Some use it for the treatment of allergies as well.
Zantac has been approved for the treatment of several conditions including the following:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Erosive esophagitis
- Gastric ulcers
- Short term treatment and maintenance therapy for duodenal ulcers
- Sometimes Zantac is used by chemotherapy patients to mitigate symptoms
The Health Risk Associated with Zantac
Zantac has come under fire due to recent findings that it contains an unusually high content of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). This is a chemical that the FDA, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) classify as a cancer-causing substance.
The high levels of NDMA in Zantac were discovered by an online pharmacy company called Valisure. Valisure tests pharmaceutical products for quality and consistency before they hit the market. They found the high levels of NDMA in Zantac when conducting their testing.
In June of 2019, Valisure petitioned the FDA to issue a Zantac recall and suspend all sales of the medication.
Which Zantac Has Been Recalled?
According to the news media, Apotex, Sandoz (Novartis) and GlaxoSmithKine have recalled Zantac products sold at Rite Aid, Walgreens and Walmart. Some generic versions of Zantac have been recalled in Canada and Europe as well.
Did the FDA Issue a Zantac Recall?
The FDA released a statement warning consumers that Zantac contained a cancer causing chemical at levels that are more than 3,000 times the legal daily intake limit and they are currently investigating the drug closely. However, the organization has not issued a formal recall.
Despite the FDA’s reluctance to issue a recall, the aforementioned retail outlets and generic drug manufacturers are taking action by taking the drug off their shelves. In addition, nearly two dozen countries have taken action to stop or restrict the sale of the medication
2018 Valsartan NDMA Recall
Zantac is not the only drug that has been recalled for containing levels of NDMA that are considered dangerous. In 2018, some companies issued recall after finding levels of NDMA that exceeded the daily intake limit in generic forms of the blood pressure drug Valsartan. However, the levels of NDMA in this medication was nowhere near the amount of the chemical found in Zantac.
There are reports that these 2018 recalls were linked to NDMA that formed after active ingredient suppliers in China and India sold components of the medication to generic drug manufacturers. Government officials in those countries have not released a statement regarding the matter.
Is the FDA Downplaying the Issue?
There are many legal minds who believe that the FDA is downplaying the dangers of Zantac.
They claim that the statements the organization released to the public concerning the issue was not powerful enough to adequately warn them of the danger. They also criticize the FDA’s lack of action to issue a recall as well as the fact that they never warned the public to stop taking the drug.
They believe the stance the FDA is taking is working to confuse the public rather then protect them.
Finding the Right Lawyer for Your Zantac Case
If you or a loved one took Zantac in the past and developed cancer as a result, it is important that you take legal action. Zantac was aware of the dangerous chemicals in their product and continued selling it to the public knowing they were causing harm to millions of innocent people. Don’t let them get away with it.
There are several lawyers that specialize in personal injury and wrongful death claims as well as some who focus specifically on the Zantac lawsuit. These lawyers can help you recoup damages that were incurred due to illness including lost wages, medical expenses and emotional pain and suffering. Victims are advised to research carefully to find a reliable lawyer they feel comfortable working with.
If your quality of life was negatively affected by taking Zantac, call a reliable lawyer to get the compensation you need and the justice you deserve.
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