Does Zantac Cause Cancer?

In April 2019, an independent pharmaceutical testing lab, Valisure, conducting quality and safety testing and analysis on Zantac and its generic equivalents. The Valisure testing found that ranitidine (the active ingredient in Zantac) contained shockingly high levels of a toxic chemical called NDMA.
NDMA (N-nitrosodimethylamine) is a chemical byproduct that results from certain modern manufacturing processes. It is well-known that NDMA causes cancer and it is listed as a human carcinogen by the World Health Organization, the Environmental Protection Agency, and numerous other international health authorities.
NDMA is particularly linked with certain types of cancer including liver, bladder, kidney, and intestinal cancer. Anyone who regularly used Zantac or a generic equivalent for a prolonged period may have been inadvertently ingesting NDMA and increasing their risk of developing cancer.

Is it Safe to Take Zantac?
It may not be safe to take Zantac or other products containing ranitidine because they may contain high levels of a cancer-causing chemical called NDMA. Testing recently discovered that Zantac and its generic equivalents contain alarmingly high levels of NDMA. NDMA is a chemical that is known to cause cancer. In response to this discovery, Zantac and generic ranitidine products have been pulled off the shelves by major retailers across the U.S.

Has Zantac Been Recalled?
Canada, France and other European health authorities have issued mandatory recalls of Zantac and other drugs that use ranitidine, the active ingredient in Zantac. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a public safety warning but has not required a mandatory recall. Nevertheless, major retailers like CVSWalgreens, and others decided to pull Zantac and generic ranitidine products from their shelves across the U.S. Soon after manufacturers of brand and generic Zantac announced that they were voluntarily recalling their medications in response to the NDMA discovery.  Our lawyers have seen this tactic over the years.  They want to call it a voluntary withdraw instead of a recall.  They can call it what they want. It is a recall in every sense that regular people use the word.

Why is Zantac Being Recalled?
Since July 2019, Zantac and other heartburn medications with the active ingredient ranitidine have been rapidly disappearing from retail shelves. The reason Zantac and is being recalled is because lab testing and analysis recently discovered that ranitidine, the active ingredient in Zantac, may contain shockingly high levels of NDMA. NDMA is a toxic chemical that causes certain types of cancers. Brand and generic Zantac has been sold over-the-counter for years, but manufacturers and retailers were previously unaware that it contained high NDMA levels. The discovery of this cancer-causing chemical in Zantac lead to widespread safety recalls.

Is Zantac the Same as Ranitidine?
Zantac and ranitidine are the same thing. Zantac is just the brand name for ranitidine. Ranitidine is the active ingredient in all brand name Zantac products as well as generic versions of Zantac. Ranitidine works by blocking a hormone in the body called histamine which activates stomach acid pumps. This effectively decreases the levels of stomach acid and prevents heartburn and related problems.

Which Ranitidine Products Have Been Recalled?
All over the counter heartburn medications with ranitidine as the active ingredient have been recalled or pulled from shelves. This includes all products under the Zantac brand name as well as all generic equivalents of Zantac which contain ranitidine.

What Is the Cancer Causing Ingredient in Zantac?
The active ingredient in Zantac (ranitidine) was recently found to contain high quantities of a cancer causing chemical known as N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). NDMA was originally used as component in rocket fuel, but in the early 1970s it was discovered that NDMA is a potent carcinogen. Our lawyers are seeing this problem not just with Zantac but with other drugs. Animal testing of NDMA found that it repeatedly caused very high rates of certain types of cancer. It is now widely accepted as a chemical substance that causes cancer.  The Zantac defendants probably will not disagree with this. As a result, NDMA is no longer intentionally manufactured or used in anything. It does appear, however, as a byproduct of certain chemical manufacturing processes and can be found at extremely low levels in certain types of processed foods.

What Kind of Cancer Does Zantac Cause?
It was recently discovered that Zantac and generic equivalents containing the active ingredient (ranitidine) contain very high levels of NDMA. NDMA is a well-known carcinogen that has repeatedly caused cancer in animal lab testing. NDMA can increase the risk of all types of cancer, but it has been specifically linked as a cause of certain types of cancer. The types of cancer most closely linked to NDMA ingestion are liver cancer, stomach cancer, colon cancer, and other cancers involving the gastrointestinal system.

Are Zantac Lawsuits Being Filed?
Hundreds of Zantac product liability lawsuits have already been filed across the U.S. and thousands more are expected to be filed over the next few years. In October 2019, a multidistrict litigation (MDL) was filed by plaintiffs’ lawyers in the Northern District of California to centralize all incoming Zantac lawsuits in federal courts. The Zantac MDL will likely end up being one of the largest drug MDLs ever as experts are predicting that it will include thousands of individual Zantac plaintiffs.

Who Can File a Zantac Lawsuit?
Potential Zantac plaintiffs include almost anyone who regularly used Zantac (or a generic ranitidine product) for any extended period of time and was subsequently diagnosed with cancer. Certain types of cancer (liver, stomach, colon, etc.) are most strongly linked to NDMA exposure from Zantac, but any former Zantac user diagnosed with cancer is a potential plaintiff.