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Heartburn is a fairly common affliction characterized by a burning sensation in the chest. More than 60 million Americans experience heartburn at least once a month. But most of the time, dietary changes or nonprescription drugs can alleviate the discomfort. Many people would not think twice about the dangers of a drug used to remedy such an easily treatable condition. Yet, several people claim they developed cancer after taking the heartburn medication Zantac. Have you been diagnosed with cancer after taking Zantac? Don’t wait, reach out today to speak with a Zantac lawyer at The Lake Law Firm.
Our law firm is currently handling lawsuits on behalf of individuals who have taken Zantac to treat heartburn. Zantac reportedly contains a toxic and carcinogenic chemical called NDMA, which may increase the risk of certain cancers. Thousands of unsuspecting individuals used Zantac, which advertised no warning of cancer. Call (888) 525-3529 or fill out the free case evaluation form on this page today to speak with a Zantac lawyer at The Lake Law Firm.
Zantac is classified as a histamine-2 blocker that reduces the amount of acid the stomach produces. It is the brand name form of ranitidine. Consumers could receive Zantac over-the-counter (OTC) or through a prescription. People took OTC ranitidine to prevent and relieve heartburn, while doctors prescribed ranitidine to treat ulcers in the stomach and intestinal ulcers, or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
In September 2019, FDA testing of the product revealed low N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) levels. NDMA is an environmental contaminant sometimes found in food and water. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies NDMA as a possible carcinogen, a substance capable of causing cancer. Further studies indicated that levels of NDMA in ranitidine increased at higher temperatures.
An independent lab in California, Emery Pharma, found that heat and time contribute to higher levels of NDMA in Zantac. Therefore, NDMA levels can increase even after the medication is packaged and stored. These worrisome findings confirmed that the longer Zantac sits on the shelf, the higher the NDMA levels.
The FDA did not recall ranitidine products following the testing in 2019. Rather, the agency claimed the levels of NDMA found in ranitidine barely exceed those found in common foods. However, the FDA did mention that consumers could consider alternative medicines.
In September 2019, manufacturers and pharmacies like CVS, Walmart, and Walgreens stopped the distribution of ranitidine drugs.
On April 1, 2020, the FDA finally ordered the withdrawal of all Zantac and other ranitidine medications from the market. This recall applied to all OTC and prescription forms of ranitidine. Despite the warning in 2019, the FDA advised it did not have enough evidence to pull ranitidine products. However, the agency issued this order after discovering that NDMA levels can increase in Zantac even when stored at normal temperatures. The recall instructed all retailers, manufacturers, doctors, and people taking the drug (with a doctor’s assistance in stopping) to remove the drug or dispose of it.
Scientific studies link NDMA-contaminated ranitidine to certain types of cancer. Scientists continue to research the side effects of ranitidine but have not yet determined an exact risk value. Prolonged exposure to high NDMA levels in ranitidine may cause:
According to Zantac lawsuits, what was supposed to be a quick relief for heartburn has turned into a nightmare for countless individuals. You may qualify for significant compensation if you developed cancer after taking Zantac. Find out more by contacting The Lake Law Firm today.
Thousands of people have filed Zantac lawsuits nationwide. In February 2020, all federal Zantac lawsuits were consolidated into multidistrict litigation (MDL). Over 14,000 Zantac lawsuits were pending in the MDL. The judge overseeing these Zantac lawsuits ruled that only brand name Zantac cases would proceed. Also, the MDL only focused on five types of cancer: bladder, liver, pancreatic, stomach, and esophageal.
Although attorneys in the federal MDL decided to move forward with only bladder, esophageal, gastric, liver, and pancreatic cancer cases, individuals have filed state lawsuits against Zantac manufacturers for other forms of cancer. Plaintiffs who allege they developed breast, kidney, colorectal, prostate, and lung cancer are now filing lawsuits in state courts nationwide.
Brand name Zantac manufacturers involved in lawsuits include:
In December 2022, Judge Rosenberg, presiding over the MDL, dismissed all federal Zantac claims. Judge Rosenberg excluded the plaintiffs’ expert testimony, citing insufficient evidence to link Zantac to cancer. However, this dismissal does not spell the end of Zantac lawsuits. Tens of thousands of Zantac lawsuits are still pending in state courts. Also, the plaintiffs recently filed to appeal Judge Rosenberg’s dismissal, but this will likely be a long process.
Despite Judge Rosenberg’s controversial decision, Zantac lawsuits can proceed in California state court. California Superior Court Judge Evelio Grillo ruled the plaintiffs’ experts were reliable and that the scientific evidence was sound. The next Zantac bellwether trial is scheduled for November 2023. These test trials provide insight into how juries view claims that Zantac causes cancer and how much cases might be worth.
There is no global Zantac settlement at this time. However, in August 2022, the first Zantac case scheduled for court reached a $500,000 Zantac settlement shortly before trial. Plaintiff Joseph Bayer voluntarily dismissed his case due to a Zantac settlement he reached with generic drugmakers.
If you or a loved one developed cancer after taking Zantac, you may recover compensation for any or all of the following:
Millions of people took Zantac before warnings of its links to cancer surfaced. Lawsuits argue that Zantac manufacturers, including GSK, Pfizer, and Boehringer Ingelheim, neglected to warn the public about the dangers of NDMA in their products. Despite growing evidence of NDMA levels increasing in Zantac products, these companies did not pull their products from the market. We understand that financial compensation cannot make up for the irreversible damage to your health, but a lawsuit can hold manufacturers accountable for their reckless actions. Our Zantac lawyers are on standby to speak with you about your potential claim.
The Lake Law Firm was founded by Edward J. Lake, Esq., a personal injury lawyer for over 25 years. Our dedicated team of attorneys is committed to seeking justice on behalf of those who have suffered injury or death due to the negligence of others. Our experienced attorneys handle many different types of pharmaceutical drugs, medical devices, and other defective products. The lawyers in our firm have helped collect millions of dollars for their clients. A Zantac lawyer will advocate for you and your rights. Please contact us for a free confidential case evaluation at (888) 525-3529 or submit an inquiry on this page.