What Potential Long Term Consequences Could Zantac Cause?
Zantac (ranitidine), a popular over-the-counter antacid drug was recalled by the FDA in 2019 due to a link between the drug and the cancer-causing chemical NDMA. But the risk of cancer is not the only potential long-term consequence that Zantac could cause.
Zantac may involve other long-term adverse health effects. Due to these negative effects and the length of time Zantac was on the market, a significant number of claimants may file legal claims against the manufacturers of Zantac and its generics.
Long-Term Side Effects of Zantac | Ranitidine Long-Term Consequences
Zantac is a popular brand name for the generic drug ranitidine. Ranitidine is an acid-reducing agent. It is available over-the-counter or by prescription.
Ranitidine is used to treat conditions such as:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Acid reflux
- Peptic or stomach ulcers
Unnervingly, ranitidine has been one of the most frequently taken drugs in the U.S., in the top 50 most-used drugs. Since its approval in the 1980s, countless patients have trusted ranitidine.
Some known side effects of ranitidine, according to the National Institutes of Health, include:
- Chest pain (other than heartburn)
- Constipation or difficulty eliminating
- Diarrhea or watery stools
- Stomach pain and vomiting
- Shortness of breath
Zantac may also cause complications in patients with medical histories of liver or kidney disease or those who are allergic to ranitidine.
The occasional mild side effects are not the most worrisome ones. Instead, the severe risk is among patients who routinely took Zantac daily for many years until the recall.
Ranitidine and Cancer | Risk of Cancer from Zantac
While ranitidine (Zantac) was recalled as a result of its link to cancer-causing chemical N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), there’s still no definitive link between ranitidine and cancer. However, NDMA has been linked to multiple adverse effects and complications, including:
- Abdominal cramps and diarrhea
- Enlarged liver
In addition, NDMA has been linked to the following types of cancers:
- Stomach cancer
- Cancer of the small intestine
- Colorectal cancer
- Esophageal cancer
- Liver cancer
Because there is strong evidence that NDMA causes cancer, but no definitive proof, NDMA is classified as a “probable carcinogen” by the FDA.
Seeking Help for Long-Term Exposure to Zantac
It is scary when a common, trusted drug is found to be unsafe. Especially for regular, daily users of Zantac, it’s been unsettling to learn about the connection between ranitidine and NDMA.
It can be equally upsetting to try to decide when to take legal action.
A Zantac user may consider legal action if:
- They have received a cancer diagnosis.
- They are concerned about the risk of cancer.
- They have suffered kidney or liver damage after taking Zantac.
If you have a concern about the potential long-term consequences of Zantac, reach out to your doctor to learn more about your risk. If you have suffered from long-term use of Zantac, consider contacting an attorney.
If you’ve been injured – physically, emotionally, or financially – because you took Zantac, you may be entitled to compensation. Many Zantac lawsuits are currently consolidated in multidistrict litigation (MDL) in the Southern District of Florida. Plaintiffs in these lawsuits are seeking damages to compensate for the long-term consequences of their Zantac injuries, including medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. Contact a lawyer to discuss your rights and options today.