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The FDA Releases Safer Alternatives to Zantac As Investigation Into Contaminated Ranitidine-Based Medication Continues

On Behalf of | Oct 29, 2019 | FDA Alerts

As the FDA continues its investigation into the carcinogenic contamination of Zantac and other ranitidine-based drugs, the agency also released an extensive list of alternative medications that are deemed safe from toxic contaminants. Here, the Baltimore pharmaceutical liability attorneys at Peter Angelos Law discuss updates to the Zantac contamination investigation as well as provide an overview of the FDA’s list of untainted alternatives.

FDA Investigations Found Zantac to be Tainted with Carcinogen NDMA

Drugmaker Sanofi recently pulled heartburn medication, Zantac, a brand of ranitidine, from the market after batches of the drug tested positive for traces of the probable human carcinogen, NDMA. Zantac is an antacid and antihistamine popularly used to treat heartburn, stomach ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and other gastrointestinal conditions. NDMA, or N-nitrosodimethylamine, is a type of impurity that is classified as a probable human carcinogen. NDMA, which is found in some vegetables, dairy and water as well as certain grilled and cured meats, may cause cancer if consumed and is associated with a host of side effects like abdominal pain, dizziness, fever, headache, jaundice, vomiting and more. Sanofi’s issued recall of Zantac from U.S. and Canadian pharmacies was voluntary and follows the halt in shipment of a variety of generic ranitidine after traces of NDMA surfaced.

The FDA Releases a List of Safe Alternatives to Zantac

As a response to the FDA’s discovery of traces of NDMA in Zantac and other forms of ranitidine, the regulatory agency released a list of alternative antacids and antihistamines that are not tainted with carcinogens. The list includes medications such as Pepcid, or famotidine; Tagamet, or cimetidine; Nexium, or esomeprazole; Prevacid, or lansoprazole; and Prilosec, or omeprazole. Currently, these medications show no signs of NDMA contamination based on preliminary testing. This list could potentially aid a significant amount of individuals who take antacids such as Zantac and are seeking an alternative form after the NDMA contamination concerns were revealed.

As the FDA continues its investigation into the NDMA contamination of Zantac and other forms of ranitidine, pharmacies such as CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid have removed ranitidine from their shelves. In addition, drugmaker Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories has issued a voluntary recall of both its prescription and over-the-counter ranitidine as a response to the contamination allegations.

Discuss Your Legal Rights with a Baltimore Pharmaceutical Liability Attorney at Peter Angelos Law

NDMA is a known impurity that could cause severe illness in individuals who are exposed to it. When major drugmakers manufacture a medication intended for widespread public use, they have the utmost responsibility to ensure their product is completely safe and free from toxins or impurities. At The Law Offices of Peter Angelos, we passionately represent consumers who are negatively impacted by pharmaceutical drugs and can provide you skilled legal representation—we urge you to contact our Baltimore office today if you or a loved one may have taken contaminated Zantac or other generic ranitidine.