If you suffer from heartburn or acid reflux, then you may be familiar with the issues surrounding the popular heartburn medication Zantac. Recent testing demonstrated that ranitidine, the active ingredient in Zantac and generic versions of the drug, produced a chemical called n-nitrosodidimethylamine (NDMA). NDMA is known to cause cancer in humans. As a result of this testing, Zantac was recalled and pulled off store shelves.
If you were a long term user of Zantac and developed cancer, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. How will you know if you are at risk of cancer if you’ve been regularly taking Zantac? There are some signs and symptoms of Zantac-related cancer that you should be aware of.
Possible Signs of Cancer
According to the World Health Organization, the most common type of cancer that results from the ingestion of NDMA is colorectal cancer. If you have been regularly taking Zantac or one of its generic forms, you may want to consult with your doctor to determine whether you should be examined for cancer. Gastric cancer or cancer of the stomach is also another common type of cancer caused by NDMA. Some signs and symptoms of colorectal cancer include:
- Anemia that may result from intestinal bleeding
- Sudden and persistent changes in bowel movements such as diarrhea or constipation
- Episodes of gas, pain, or cramps in the abdomen
- Fatigue or weakness
- Unexpected weight loss
If you experience these symptoms, you should consult with your doctor as soon as possible.
Additional Risk Factors
While long-term use of Zantac is a definite risk factor for developing cancer, there are other risk factors that can increase the likelihood that you will have cancer. They include:
- Family History of Cancer—if your family has a history of cancer, especially colorectal or gastric cancer, then you may be more prone to developing cancer as a result of consuming NDMA.
- History of Colorectal Polyps—if you have a history of adenomas in your colon, then you may be more prone to developing colorectal cancer.
- History of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)—IBD is a condition where the colon is inflamed over a long period of time. People with IBD can develop cells that may turn cancerous.
If you have this history, you should have yourself checked regularly for cancer, especially if you used Zantac.
Contact a Dangerous Drug Attorney
If you’ve developed cancer after the long-term use of Zantac or its generic versions, you should consult with an experienced product liability attorney. Gregg Goldfarb has been helping the victims of dangerous drugs for over 20 years. Contact us online or call us at 305-374-7000 to schedule a free consultation.