In June of 2019, the pharmacy Valisure tested the popular heartburn drug Zantac (ranitidine) and detected high levels of a cancer-causing agent called N-nitrosodimethylamine or NDMA. Since the study was released, thousands of consumers have been concerned that they could develop cancer from the use of Zantac. Now a new study reveals that these concerns may be valid.
A study published in the journal Cancers found that people who regularly used Zantac were at risk of developing a number of different cancers, including esophageal, colorectal, and stomach cancer. Researchers examined the FDA Adverse Events Reporting System and looked for reports related to the use of proton pump inhibitors (PPI) and H2 antagonists (of which Zantac is one). Both types of drugs are used to treat heartburn, ulcers, and stomach upset. The researchers looked at reports of cancer and found a marked increase in cancer rates among users of Zantac compared to the users of other heartburn medications. They found elevated incidences of colorectal, esophageal, and stomach cancers among Zantac users.
The research concluded that the study results support the hypothesis that Zantac contaminated with NDMA increased the risk of cancer. This study was consistent with the results of a study performed in 2000 that found that there was a 2.4 fold increase in the risk of developing stomach/colorectal cancer with the use of Zantac.
Researchers warned that there are some limitations to the study. The FDA Adverse Events Reporting System is based on self-reports by consumers. The data is not subject to validation. However, they still believe that the study indicates that there is a link between NDMA-contaminated Zantac and gastrointestinal cancers.
Past research has cemented a link between NDMA and the development of cancer. It has been found to be a potent carcinogen in animals. A 2015 study found that consumers who ingested NDMA-contaminated food were 34% more likely to develop cancer. NDMA is a byproduct of certain industrial processes and can be found in certain food products, contaminated cosmetics, and other products.
Contact a Product Liability Attorney
If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer after the long-term use of Zantac, you should consult with an experienced attorney. For over 25 years, Gregg Goldfarb has been helping the victims of dangerous products. Contact us online or call us at 305-374-7000 to schedule a free consultation.