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Zantac Lawsuits: All That You Need To Know

Heartburn, also known as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), is common in the United States. Thus, numerous heartburn prescriptions are accessible to treat the illness.

Zantac, also tagged ranitidine, is a heartburn treatment that reduces stomach acid levels in patients suffering from peptic ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and the Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (excess acid caused by tumors).

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Zantac Lawsuits: All That You Need To Know

Heartburn, also known as Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), is common in the United States. Thus, numerous heartburn prescriptions are accessible to treat the illness.

Zantac, also tagged ranitidine, is a heartburn treatment that reduces stomach acid levels in patients suffering from peptic ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and the Zollinger-Ellison syndrome (excess acid caused by tumors).

According to a 2012 research, Zantac can aid hives (urticaria) treatment. This drug is administered orally or injected into the muscle or venous tissue. 

Zantac belongs to a group of antacids called histamine (H2) blockers — known for stopping the activity of the naturally occurring substance involved in the control of the digestive process and the localized immunological response (such as sneezing, itching, and watery eyes).

On April 1st, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered the removal of all over-the-counter and prescribed Zantac and ranitidine (generic Zantac) from the market.

This recall stemmed from NMDA linkage to the popular heartburn drug. Read on to see why plaintiffs are filing claims against the manufacturer and how a lawyer can aid your compensation-seeking endeavors.

What Is N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA)?

N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) is a chemical that has carcinogen tendencies. It’s an industrial waste product with a mild, recognizable odor and a yellowish hue.

NDMA is a frequent environmental pollutant that the FDA may find in preserved foods and tobacco smoke. Additionally, this chemical has been a jet and rocket fuel component and acts as a stabilizer in industrial lubricants.

 

Traces of NDMA contamination are found in numerous ARB blockers (blood pressure drugs) like Valsartan — a medication recalled by the FDA in 2018. Although Valsartan’s NDMA contamination had connections to a Chinese organization, it’s unclear how the carcinogen contaminated Zantac.


Therefore, on September 19th, 2019, pharmaceutical company — Novartis — declared it’d no longer sell the generic Zantac.

Eliminating NDMA From the Market

The Food and Drug Administration ordered all Zantac manufacturers to halt operations on April 1, 2020.

This recall happened following an ongoing study into the presence of NDMA in Zantac. The study confirmed that NDMA traces in prescriptions containing ranitidine escalates to harmful levels that shouldn’t be consumed by individuals.

The FDA has advised folks using this over-the-counter medication to switch to alternative drugs authorized for their problems or change their lifestyles to alleviate the effects of GERD and other gastrointestinal conditions.

Alongside the FDA, drug regulatory bodies from other nations also recalled Zantac.

Nonetheless, there have been consequences because some people who took NDMA-contaminated ranitidine and Zantac developed cancer, promoting legal actions.

The Emergence of Zantac Lawsuits

Zantac lawsuits are complaints made by people who ingested ranitidine or Zantac contaminated with NDMA and eventually suffered cancer. 

Plaintiffs allege NDMA exposure may have contributed to their esophageal, pancreatic, stomach, liver, and bladder cancer.

Victims made these allegations after the FDA found out that Zantac’s active ingredient — ranitidine — contains a carcinogen called N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA).

By April 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) instructed manufacturers to halt the Zantac sales in the United States.

The FDA made this decision because the longer the product stays in circulation, the more people will get ill from Zantac’s NDMA traces. 

Note that recalls or lawsuits didn’t affect Sanofi’s new famotidine-based medicine, Zantac 360.

Litigations filed against Zantac (ranitidine) allege that:

  • Zantac’s design is flawed since its crucial component, ranitidine, is an erratic chemical.
  • The prescription label for Zantac failed to adequately notify consumers about the cancer dangers.

What Cancers Are Associated With the Zantac Lawsuit?

People who used Zantac and filed claims cited many malignancies connected to the medicine and NDMA.

According to Zantac lawyers, doctors diagnosing those who took Zantac with cancer confirmed it wasn’t due to genetics but NDMA exposure. 

The following cancers are eligible for Zantac lawsuits:

  • Bladder Cancer
  • Esophageal Cancer
  • Liver Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Gastric/Stomach Cancer

NOTE: Bladder cancer is the most closely associated cancer form with Zantac. 

People who developed one of these malignancies after using Zantac from January 2000 till date can contact their lawyer to file a lawsuit. 

Other Health Conditions Connected to Zantac Ingestion

Besides cancer, other health anomalies can occur due to Zantac.

Some of these conditions include: 

  • Primary Pulmonary Hypertension (PPH): It’s an uncommon lung condition characterized by high pulmonary blood pressure. PPH occurs when the blood vessels in the lungs constrict, increasing the pressure inside the pulmonary artery exceeding its normal levels.
  • Crohn’s Disease: It’s an inflammatory bowel disorder that inflames the digestive tract, resulting in chronic diarrhea, abdominal discomfort, cramps, and weight loss.

Who Can File a Zantac Lawsuit?

To qualify for a Zantac lawsuit, plaintiffs must meet certain factors, as stated by the Zantac lawyers. These factors include documented Zantac ingestion, a cancer diagnosis, and a link showing the relationship between the disease and Zantac.

Lawyers will only consider cases from individuals who took Zantac. Why? Generic ranitidine will no longer be available for consideration during litigation.

Furthermore, only an attorney can adequately analyze a claim and assist in gathering medical documents and Zantac lawsuit information required to build a rock-solid case.

The conditions necessary for your claim to “hold water” include: 

  • Zantac Usage

Plaintiffs must demonstrate that they used brand-name Zantac containing ranitidine for a minimum of one year before cancer detection. Prescription holders can issue prescription verification via medical records. 

Conversely, those who used over-the-counter Zantac must possess a receipt and further evidence that they purchased and used the heartburn medicine.

Here, a testimonial or doctor’s note will do. Your lawyer is capable of assisting you in proving usage.

The Cancer Diagnosis

Cancer is the most common illness alleged in Zantac and ranitidine cases. For prospective claimants, there’s a diagnosis requirement of liver, esophageal, stomach, bladder, or pancreatic cancer. 

The estimated time frame between when an individual used Zantac and their initial cancer diagnosis must be no more than 20 years. Also, potential clients must get their cancer diagnosis at 89 years or younger.

Links Between the Disease and Zantac

Using higher pharmaceutical doses continuously might suffice in establishing the link. The duration of time an individual has taken the medication also has an impact on the case. To attain eligibility, the plaintiff should’ve ingested Zantac at least once every week for a year or more.

Settlements From Zantac Lawsuits

Since Zantac intake causes cancer, courts understand that the victims and their family members must settle pending medical bills and recover unpaid wages.

Financial reimbursement from a Zantac lawsuit might assist the victims with past, current, and future medical expenses. Zantac lawsuit settlements may assist with compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Bereavement of a loved one
  • Funeral expenditures
  • Lost earning potential
  • Travel for medical care
  • Loss of family breadwinner
  • Suffering and pain
  • Companionship loss

Zantac Lawsuit Claims

The primary argument in Zantac litigations is that the defendants failed to inform patrons that Zantac’s main component — ranitidine — is an unstable compound and can create NDMA in the stomach, increasing the risk of cancer development.

Plaintiffs seek settlement for their injuries in addition to their anguish and suffering. 

Some notable court claims include:

  • Galimidi, Joseph L Sues Sanofi

On September 13th, 2019, a Florida citizen, Joseph L. Galimidi, became one of the first plaintiffs to launch a private Zantac case against Sanofi in the US.

Since 2009, Galimidi had been on Zantac. In 2013, he was diagnosed with breast cancer, an extremely rare condition in men. He seeks compensation for his harm, suffering, and anguish.

Joseph claimed that although Zantac relieved his heartburn, it also caused damage to his health and contributed to the development of breast cancer since it contains human carcinogen — NDMA.

There have been allegations of cancer associated with Zantac during the drug’s sale in the United States, along with other ranitidine-based medications. Galimidi contends Sanofi had many opportunities to investigate the connection and alert the market, but chose not to. 

He also claimed that despite being aware of the cancer dangers linked to ranitidine and Zantac, the defendant persisted in claiming ranitidine medications, including Zantac, didn’t pose significant health hazards.

Mark Allan Blake Files Lawsuit Against Sanofi

On October 21st, 2019, Colorado resident Mark Allan Blake sued Sanofi U.S. Services Inc., Pfizer, Boehringer Ingelheim, GlaxoSmithKline, and Chattem Inc., over Zantac.

In 1996, Blake began ingesting Zantac as a prescribed medication. Afterwards, he switched to using Zantac over-the-counter about four times a week. 

He received a bladder cancer diagnosis by doctors in 2018 and claimed that the medication was to blame.

Blake claims that before 1981, studies showed Zantac could create large NDMA amounts. Thus, the company should have notified the public. 

However, manufacturers failed to do so.

According to Blake’s complaint, the entire issue wasn’t an accident nor was it due to reasonable neglect.

Instead, defendants were aware that it was possible to gain money and thereby persuaded users that Zantac was safe for use. He insisted that they knew that the public transparency of Zantac’s main issues would limit the funds they’d make from selling Zantac.

Legal Action From Veterans

Veterans who received Zantac prescriptions from the Veteran Administration and were later diagnosed with cancer are already filing lawsuits.

In a April 15, 2020 release, the Defense Health Agency (DHA) recommended military beneficiaries consult with their physicians about a prescribed Zantac substitute after the FDA issued its market removal notice.

DHA urged beneficiaries consuming over-the-counter Zantac to cease taking it immediately and eliminate the drug under the FDA regulations. DHA advised patients to report any adverse Zantac side effects to the FDA.

The DHA notice cautioned that:

“The contaminant in some ranitidine products accumulates over time when maintained at above the room temperatures and could potentially result in consumers exposure to hazardous amounts of this impurity.” 

However, it did not expressly notify veterans about the cancer risk associated with NDMA.

Companies Involved in Zantac Lawsuits

  1. The companies involved in Zantac lawsuits are: 

    • Chattem Inc.
    • Sanofi-Aventis U.S. LLC
    • Boehringer Ingelheim
    • Sanofi U.S. Services Inc
    • GlaxoSmithKline
    • Pfizer

    However, due to federal statutes prohibiting them from being sued, Judge Robin L. Rosenberg dismissed lawsuits filed against manufacturers such as Amneal Pharmaceuticals, Teva Pharmaceuticals, and others in July 2021.

    Victims should contact a lawyer if they have concerns about whether or not lawsuits relate to your particular ranitidine brand.

Update on Zantac Lawsuits

Lawsuits against Zantac producers have reached the trial stage. “California Ranitidine Product Cases JCCP 5150” will commence on October 10th, 2022, according to the Superior Court of Alameda Judge – Evelio Grillo.

In October 2021, the West Palm Beach, Florida, court denied every attempt to stop the Multidistrict Litigation (MDL). The cases can move forward, according to the U.S. District Judge Robin Rosenberg. 

Judge Rosenberg is currently hearing more than 800 cases.

Although the California trial is the first to be scheduled, there may be a distinct time frame for other trials. 

The Florida MDL will begin in 2023 alongside other cases in states like Tennessee, New Jersey, New York, Illinois, Minnesota, Washington, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Texas. 

The first of several bellwether trials, starting with the plaintiffs’ case, is the hearing before Judge Grillo. 

The defendants’ selected case, billed to commence on February 6, 2023, will come up next.

Has Any Zantac Settlement Been Reached?

No jury verdicts or settlements involving Zantac have been reached. Bellwether trials will assist defendants and plaintiffs in gauging the potential settlement value of a case.

Proposed settlement payments are usually determined  by the plaintiffs damages and other circumstances. 

Due to the possibility that Zantac users would claim the medication caused their cancer, lawyers predict that individual settlements from Zantac lawsuits might total several hundred thousand dollars.

Questions Your Attorney Might Ask

How Much Zantac Did You Consume?

Most individuals seeking settlement for Zantac-related ailments have taken it for at least a year before their cancer diagnosis. It could be challenging to recall how long you consumed Zantac, but try your best to guess this period. 

Give the legal advisor records of your prescriptions or medical documents to back up your claims.

What Illness Have You Been Diagnosed With?

Cancer, primarily bladder and stomach cancer, are linked to plaintiffs who have filed Zantac claims. Your case’s lawyer will seek insight into your diagnosis and when you received it.

Do You Experience Any Harmful Side Effects?

Despite the rarity of Zantac side effects, you should inform your lawyer if you have ever suffered from liver failure, gastrointestinal issues, cardiovascular problems, or other serious disorders. 

You should also include how they have affected your capacity to carry out daily tasks.

What Treatment Plan Does Your Cancer Require? 

Be prepared to share your cancer treatment regimen with your lawyer at your meeting, including how well it has been working. 

The sort of cancer you suffer from and the discovery phase may affect your compensation value.

Any Family/Historical Background of Cancer?

If cancer has already affected you or a family member, your chance of getting it again might be higher. Be prepared to share your family’s medical history and submit copies of your medical documents.

Final Words

You’re eligible to file a Zantac cancer lawsuit if you or a relative received a stomach, breast, or bladder cancer diagnosis after using a heartburn drug like Zantac or another ranitidine prescription. 

To expedite the process and get the compensation you deserve, we advise hiring a top-notch lawyer. Consider contacting an attorney that operates a contingency-fee arrangement. 

That way, you don’t pay a dime in legal fees unt you receive compensation.

See If You Can File

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