If you’re still using ranitidine to treat heartburn, it is very important that you know that this medication has been linked to cancer and recalled. It is no longer being sold. You should stop using it immediately if you have older packages still in your home.
The most common brand name for ranitidine is Zantac. It was, before the recall, one of the most widely used heartburn drugs in the United States. While it has been taken out of stores and is no longer being sold, many people may still own it without understanding the danger. Additionally, Zantac is just the brand name. There are many generic forms that could also be dangerous.
The issue is that these medications could contain levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) that are too high for human consumption. This makes them a probable carcinogen, so using them could eventually increase the odds of developing cancer.
It is worth noting that you cannot always avoid NDMA. It exists in nature and can be found in grilled meat, vegetables, dairy products, other food and even water. At very low levels, this is exposure that is not a significant danger to humans. The specific issue with Zantac and the generic medications is that storing them in certain conditions can cause the level to rise too high, putting the risk over what the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers acceptable and safe.
Many people used Zantac, and not just to treat heartburn. They also used it consistently to prevent heartburn before it began. Those who unknowingly may have increased their exposure to dangerous carcinogens may need to know about all of the legal options that they have.