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Facts and risks of Zantac to the human body


Ranitidine, more commonly known as Zantac, is a popular drug used for treating heartburn. Some people may have heard that the FDA has found a possible human carcinogen (something that may lead to cancer) in it. Today, stories and information about the carcinogen in Zantac are circulating; however, the details are still murky. Keep reading to learn more.

What Is Known to Date?

While there are some reports that Zantac might cause cancer, many people wonder if there is enough scientific evidence to back up this claim. On September 13, 2019, preliminary tests by the FDA showed that there were low levels of NDMA -; N-nitrosodimethylamine. Soon after the release of these test results, drug companies, Apotex and Novartis, announced a recall for all generic ranitidine products that were being actively sold in the United States. As of October 1, 2019, several big-name drug stores, such as Walgreens and CVS, pulled Zantac along with other generic versions of this heartburn drug from their shelves.

What Is Ranitidine?

Ranitidine, which is better known by its brand name, Zantac, is available by prescription and as an over-the-counter medication. It is in a class of drugs that are called H2 blockers or histamine-2 blockers. Most people purchase OTC ranitidine for relieving or preventing cases of heartburn.

Prescription-strength options are also available for treating and preventing more serious ulcers that may occur in the intestines or stomach. Several companies are still selling generic versions of the OTC and generic prescription products.

The Canadian government’s Health Canada has requested that all companies halt the distribution of ranitidine drugs. This was done with the statement that there is current evidence that NDMA could be present in ranitidine, and it did not matter what the manufacturer provided the drug. France has also taken steps to recall all the ranitidine products in the country.

What Is NDMA and What Risks Are Associated with It?

NDMA is a type of environmental contaminant that is found in foods, water, dairy products, grilled meats, vegetables, and more. It has been classified as a potential carcinogen, and this is abased on studies in animals. The studies done in humans are limited to date.

It is essential to understand that the NDMA found in ranitidine products does not pose any immediate health issues. There are no reports to any major drug company or the FDA related to adverse effects directly related to the NDMA that is found in ranitidine. While it is classified as being a potential carcinogen, NDMA will likely only result in cancer after exposure to higher doses over longer periods of time. NDMA is one of the impurities that was recently found in some heart medications that resulted in several products being recalled.

What Are the Right Steps After Taking Ranitidine?

The FDA, along with an array of other agencies all around the globe, are actively investigating ranitidine. As these tests and studies continue, more information will be made available. Currently, the FDA has not called for people to stop taking this medicine.

For anyone concerned about the effects of the medication and the issues that it may cause they can speak to their doctor. Most doctors are going to be able to provide advice and guidance regarding what to do and how to stay safe.

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