Zantac is one of the most popular medications taken for heartburn and ulcers. It’s sold by prescription and is available over the counter as well. Last year, the FDA cited evidence that one of the main ingredients in the medication is a cancer-causing agent. As a result, three major manufacturers of the drug issued a voluntary recall. These companies were Sanofi, Appco Pharmaceuticals and Northwind Pharmaceuticals.
This month, the FDA said the risk is so high that they were ordering all Zantac to be removed from shelves immediately. The chemical in the drug that causes cancer is called N-nitroso dimethylamine. It is also present in many blood pressure medications.
The reason for this action on the part of the FDA is that they’ve confirmed that the damage caused by the drug actually increases over time. And, they found that when the drug is stored at temperatures higher than room temperature, the cancer-causing agent gets stronger. Because of this dangerous and rapid exposure, they felt it was necessary to order that all prescription-strength and over-the-counter varieties be taken off the shelves immediately.
The generic name of the popular medication is ranitidine. And the chemical, N- nitroso dimethylamine, is more commonly referred to as NDMA. When the FDA issues warnings to manufacturers and consumers last year, a few companies decided to recall the drug on their own. However, there are a lot of companies that were still marketing and distributing the drug despite the warnings.
The FDA advises any customer who is currently taking the medication to dispose of it immediately. They suggest that the patient find another over-the-counter option. They should also contact their doctor right away.
If you feel you or your loved one may have been injured by any dangerous drug, contact our office immediately.