Zantac was a readily available medication that was created to help patients with gastrointestinal problems, but may have exposed consumers to an elevated risk of cancer and other health complications. Nationwide, many lawsuits are developing with the intention to hold the manufacturers of Zantac and its generics responsible for their health conditions.
An article published by USA Today estimated that over 15 million people were prescribed Zantac each year since its release in the early 1980s. The Journal of Health Care Marketing deemed Zantac, at the time of the article’s publication, “the best-selling drug in history.” So what caused this fall from grace?
Zantac, also known as ranitidine, contains a compound classified by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a “probable human carcinogen.” That compound is called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), and it has been detected at unsafe levels in Zantac. The FDA issued a voluntary recall to users and healthcare providers in October 2019.
If you or a loved one has developed cancer or another health complication as a result of Zantac use, you may be eligible for financial recovery. At the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine, our Zantac cancer lawsuit lawyers advocate on behalf of those who have been negatively impacted by dangerous drugs and defective products. When consumers trusted Zantac to resolve their ailments, they could not have anticipated that this widely used drug could have resulted in severe health conditions. The same cannot be said for those who may have knowingly released a harmful product into the market. They should be held responsible for affecting your quality of life.
Can I File a Zantac Lawsuit?
You may be eligible to file a Zantac lawsuit if you or a loved one:
- Had a history of taking this medication
- Developed cancer or another related health complication
Your eligibility for filing a lawsuit may rest primarily on your medical history. USA Today reports that health risks associated with ranitidine date as far back as the 1980s.
With recent revelations confirming that Zantac and other forms of ranitidine may be unsafe, critical questions that have arisen include:
- What tests did the manufacturers of Zantac fail to conduct that would allow a potentially dangerous product to become one of the most popular medications on the global market?
- If tests were conducted, why was the public not made aware of possible health risks associated with NDMA in ranitidine?
- Who is responsible for such failures, which may have put millions of people at risk of serious health outcomes?
Without a doubt, these questions will be at the center of evolving lawsuits. To get claimants compensation, their Zantac cancer legal team will need to prove that the drug manufacturer was negligent in releasing a harmful product into the market. Zantac has come under fire not just from the FDA, but from other testing agencies as well. NBC News reported that David Light, the CEO of Valisure (an online pharmacy that conducts extensive testing on its medications), noted that NDMA was “inherently unstable” and posed risks to consumers.
If you were one of the customers who bought Zantac or another form of ranitidine, you may have been exposed to various health risks that you could not have known about. Coupled with this factor, along with a diagnosis of resulting health conditions, you may be able to take place in the Zantac mass tort or sue independently.
When products are found to be defective or otherwise dangerous, it is the manufacturer that is usually held responsible. True to form, cancer patients have begun to file lawsuits against the current manufacturers of Zantac through multidistrict litigation (MDL). Currently, MDL 2924 is pending class-action status, which will determine whether it will be put into motion by the attending court. Again, you may be able to sue Zantac if you or a loved one developed health complications after taking Zantac or another type of its generic form, ranitidine.
What is the Lawsuit Against Zantac?
There are several lawsuits against Zantac and its generics that are presently underway. According to an article published in the Sun-Sentinel, there are currently 141 claimants involved in a mass tort against Zantac, who have had their case assigned to a federal judge based in West Palm Beach.
Plaintiffs bringing Zantac-related litigation may allege multiple grievances against the entity they sue. These grievances may include that:
- The defendant should have conducted more thorough testing of the drug before bringing it into the market
- By failing to conduct the proper level of testing, the defendant exposed plaintiffs to an unreasonable risk of harm, specifically the risk of developing cancer
- Exposure to a potentially carcinogenic compound in Zantac (and its generic form ranitidine) may have resulted in unexplained health complications that have resulted in high expenses and related damages
More plaintiffs will likely come forward as news about the carcinogenic NDMA compound in ranitidine spreads worldwide.
Speak to a Zantac cancer lawsuit lawyer who may be able to advise you on whether you could be eligible to join a mass tort or start a lawsuit of your own. Both of these routes come with their own unique set of benefits. For example, in a class-action lawsuit, your legal team can work with other professionals to establish probable cause and examine the evidence. This method often cuts costs, as expenses are shared among claimants. Filing an independent lawsuit, though, may give you more control over legal proceedings and the fight for compensation that covers your damages.
You may have a limited time to act based on when you received your diagnosis and how long ago you were taking Zantac. Talking to a legal professional can determine a beneficial course of action for your claim and pursuing your need for financial recovery.
Can I Sue Zantac?
Claimants can sue Zantac, or anyone for that matter, for anything covered under the law. Whether that lawsuit will be successful is an entirely different story. To pursue damages against a negligent party, you must show that you sustained losses as a result of their carelessness. In the case of Zantac, you will need to demonstrate that you took the drug as indicated on the label and that you developed a health condition later on. You will also need to establish a connection between your diagnosis and the medication, however, that can be accomplished by your legal team.
Without damages, you will not be able to successfully move forward with a lawsuit. You can establish your losses by providing your lawyer with medical bills, evidence of lost wages, and other elements that prove that you have suffered as a result of taking Zantac.
If you or a loved one were diagnosed with cancer or another severe health condition after taking Zantac, you may be able to recover awards for:
- Diagnostic procedures, such as body scans and blood tests, that you had to undergo to be diagnosed with your health condition
- The cost of treatment for your cancer, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery
- The cost of doctor’s appointments related to your cancer diagnosis and treatment
- Wages or salary that you have not earned because of the time spent receiving treatment for your cancer and recovering from those treatments
- Financial protection that your family has lost because of your health condition
- Personal and professional pursuits that you have had to put on hold or abandon because of your diagnosis
- Pain and suffering that you and your family have endured because of your health condition
You may also be eligible to bring forth a wrongful death claim against one or more defendants if your loved one has died after developing a disease caused by exposure to NDMA.
If you move forward with filing a wrongful death claim either independently or with a mass tort, you may be able to recover:
- The loss of income that your loved one was likely to earn had they remained healthy
- The loss of companionship for the spouse of the deceased, as well as the loss of parental comfort and guidance for their children
- The cost of funeral expenses, including burial or cremation
- Loss of inheritance
- Your family’s emotional trauma
A Zantac cancer lawsuit lawyer can help you decide whether your best option is to join a class-action lawsuit or to bring a case of your own against those responsible for your health condition.
What Kind of Cancer does Zantac Cause?
Research is ongoing into the potential kinds of cancer caused by Zantac or its generic alternatives. Since Zantac and its generics were only recalled in October 2019, many people are just beginning to make the connection between the drug and any resulting health complications. Still, it is already known through testing in animals that NDMA may be associated with certain forms of cancer. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a study in 2000 that listed the hazards NDMA could have on people.
According to a public health statement issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), those who ingested even “low” amounts of NDMA may experience several health complications. The document referenced the development of lung and liver cancer in those affected. The World Health Organization (WHO) identified two additional types of cancer, including those affecting the colon and stomach.
It is crucial to note that the connection between Zantac and these afflictions has only recently come into question. This means that other diseases than the ones listed here may develop in certain patients.
In addition to these forms of cancer, the subjects in the study experienced other serious consequences of prolonged NDMA exposure, including:
- Liver damage
- Internal bleeding
- Miscarriage or stillbirth
These studies were conducted using mice, but the report concluded that it is reasonable to believe that ingesting NDMA through eating, drinking, or breathing could produce the same results in humans. These studies suggest that ingesting NDMA in any quantity can produce extremely harmful effects. There is no reason to believe that the cancers, deaths, and other adverse health effects seen in animals would not arise in humans under similar testing conditions.
The FDA supported these studies, remarking in September 2019, shortly before the product’s recall, that Zantac contained “a substance that could cause cancer.” Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing how long unsafe levels of NDMA have been present in Zantac and other brands of ranitidine.
What are the Long-Term Side Effects of Zantac?
The long-term side effects of Zantac have only recently come into consideration. The medication, usually sold in the form of capsules, tablets, or liquid, presented no side effects that impeded its sales. Yet, there were many known risks to taking this drug, most of which were not life-threatening.
Some of the more widely reported side effects of Zantac include:
- Gastrointestinal discomfort
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Temporary impotence
And then there are the more concerning, yet less common, side effects of taking ranitidine. These are considered serious and warrant medical attention, as they may be signs of an underlying health problem, especially in light of what is now known about ranitidine’s potential cancer-causing properties.
According to Healthline, these include:
- Changes in urine color
- Yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes
- Severe and persistent stomach pain
- Extreme fatigue
These symptoms indicate that you should seek medical attention immediately.
Zantac is also thought to cause possible changes to your brain that may adversely affect your mental health, possibly causing:
- Depressive symptoms
- Changes to your vision
- A sense of confusion or agitation for no apparent reason
- Experiencing hallucinations, both visual and auditory
side effects of taking ranitidine are highly concerning and can cause significant impact to your daily life. Moreover, each of these findings would seem to back the recent claims that ranitidine is inherently unstable, and that this instability has always put people who take Zantac at considerable risk.
Why was Zantac taken off the market?
Zantac was taken off the market along with many of its generic equivalents in October 2019. The FDA recommended voluntary recalls after it became increasingly clear that various forms of ranitidine contained a substance categorized as an environmental contaminant and a likely carcinogen. People come into contact with NDMA, the cancer-causing chemical in Zantac, almost every day with no consequences. According to Food Additives and Contaminants, NDMA is found in beer, vegetables, cured meat, potatoes, and smoked fish. However, it was because of how the body processed Zantac that resulted in its sudden recall.
The FDA set the daily limit for NDMA intake to be 0.096 micrograms or 0.32 parts per million. While the agency remarks that the levels of NDMA in ranitidine are the same that you would find in, for example, grilled meats, this is not what claimants are arguing. MDL 2924 insists that the FDA only tested Zantac and its generics before being metabolized by the human body. Before consumption, according to MDL 2924, the drug is likely harmless. However, when it comes into contact with the body’s digestive system, levels of NDMA increase. These dangerous levels, claimants insist, is what caused their health condition, not the drug alone.
The FDA stated that while they were recommending a voluntary recall, people could still take the medications they had on hand. Harvard Health Publishing seconded this statement, reporting that Zantac was safe for occasional use, and would likely not cause any harm if it was taken on an “as needed” basis.
For perspective on how seriously regulatory bodies are taking the findings regarding NDMA in ranitidine, look to the case of Health Canada. Canada’s regulator agency for drugs decreed in September 2019 that patients taking Zantac or an equivalent should speak with their doctor about a possible change in medications in light of recent findings.
This is not the first time that a drug has entered the marketplace with high levels of NDMA, only to be subsequently recalled. In August 2019, the FDA ordered a recall of various blood pressure medications after discovering that the drugs did not meet the agency’s safety standards.
These medications included:
This instance may set a legal precedent for how dangerous drug cases, specifically those with high NDMA levels, will be handled by attending courts. In fact, there are various lawsuits currently pending, built on the basis that these drugs also caused cancer in those who took them. What this shows is that drug companies—as well as the FDA—cannot possibly foresee all complications that arise from taking certain medications. However, that does not excuse the liable parties from taking responsibility.
If you or a loved one developed health complications after taking Zantac, there is no reason to pay for the resulting expenses out of pocket. The company that allowed its dangerous drug to be consumed by millions of people should pay for claimants’ incurred losses.
What will it Cost to Hire a Zantac Attorney?
The cost to hire a Zantac attorney will often be nothing up front, as many law firms operate on a contingency basis. This means there is no cost to the client until the successful resolution of their case. Lawyers take on a certain level of financial risk when accepting clients. If they cannot successfully pursue damages on their client’s behalf, then they do not get paid.
On the onset of you and your Zantac cancer lawsuit lawyer’s working relationship, you will sign a contract outlining the details of your partnership. One of those details will cover the issue of payment. When working on a contingency basis, the contract will outline what percentage of your settlement the lawyer will take to cover their services. According to the American Bar Association, lawyers usually take 33% of what they win for you as payment. For example, if you recover $1,000 at the conclusion of your lawsuit, that means your lawyer will take $330 to recover their expenses. Yet, this number may be more or less depending on the written agreement you made with your lawyer.
There is no data pointing to the amount of money you will receive after suing Zantac. However, there is information from other settled dangerous drug cases that may indicate what a successful resolution may look like. In a statement published by the Department of Justice in 2012, the makers of Avandia (a medication designed to treat Type 2 diabetes) settled for $3 billion after ensuing lawsuits. At the time, this was the largest payment ever made by a drug company in the wake of health care fraud. Yet, there is little information regarding how much the claimants or the lawyers involved received at the settlement’s conclusion.
Why is Anidjar & Levine the Right Law Firm to Handle my Zantac Cancer Lawsuit?
The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine is the right law firm to hand your Zantac cancer lawsuit because the entire team takes it personally when anybody is harmed through no action of their own. Our Zantac cancer lawsuit attorneys are ready and willing to fight for individuals who were exposed to a risk of developing cancer without proper warning from the manufacturers of Zantac and its generics.
We defend those who have suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one due to the negligence of others.
Some of our practice areas include:
- Accident claims
- Property claims
- Social security
- Worker’s compensation
- Medical malpractice
- Criminal defense
We know what it takes to navigate the courts and put forth a successful case; this knowledge is invaluable when it comes time to fight for compensation on our clients’ behalf.
What sets our team apart from other lawyers is the belief that our clients are family and should be treated as such. We go to great lengths to ensure that you not only receive the legal services you deserve but also have a responsive, caring team by your side. We can answer all questions and concerns that you have about the legal process throughout the entirety of your case.
There are several qualities that you want from a lawyer when considering bringing a civil action, especially when moving forward with a case against Zantac.
When you work with us, you can rest easy knowing that:
- We are genuinely invested in your wellbeing and taking an approach to representation that puts you first.
- We understand what needs to be done to promote a beneficial resolution to your case and get the compensation you deserve.
- We have prior experience representing others in circumstances similar to your own.
- We understand legal tactics that corporate lawyers are likely to employ against you and are prepared to counter those tactics appropriately.
- We are not afraid to take on tough cases.
- We handle the entirety of your legal needs so that you can focus on your health or mourning the passing of a loved one.
Our team does all this and more. We pride ourselves on going the extra mile when fighting for compensation on behalf of our clients.
Call Our Team at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine Today
We understand that you are in a challenging situation if you are either facing a battle with cancer or mourning the loss of a loved one who has passed away. It may also be difficult to come to terms that another party’s negligence resulted in your present situation.
It is important that during this tough time, you reach out for the help that you need and deserve. Calling a legal team that will provide you empathetic care and responsive legal representation is one of the first steps in relieving any of your stressors.
The team at the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine will handle your case in its entirety, including:
- Handling your case on a contingency basis at no cost to you
- Conducting an in-person or over-the-phone case review at your convenience
- Determining whether your case is best suited to be filed as an independent lawsuit or in MDL
- Collecting evidence and consulting relevant professionals that can benefit your case (including medical experts, legal consultants, and pharmaceutical experts)
- Negotiating any possible settlement offers
- Providing responsive legal service while defending your right to privacy
Our team is standing by to take your call. We are eager to get to know you and your family to determine how we can help you during this trying time. For a free case review, call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine today at 1-800-747-3733.