On Wednesday, April 1, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) urgently suggested that prescription and over-the-counter Zantac tablets be taken off U.S. store shelves due to possible contamination of a cancer-causing agent.
According CNN, the FDA claims to have recently discovered a lingering contaminant, N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), within the ranitidine containing drugs that can potentially harm humans over an extended period of time; more specifically, if these medications are stored in high temperature rooms.
NDMA is classified as a human carcinogen that has the possibility of causing cancer in living tissues. The director of FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Dr. Janet Woodcock, announced that although the Zantac samples tested did not contain threatening levels of NDMA, they cannot account for Zantacs that may have been in storage for longer or different periods of time.
Rather than to risk safety, it has been advised for these medications to be pulled off the market until further testing can be done.
The FDA suggests disposing of all Zantacs and using other approved medications to aid heartburn. Patients with prescription from doctors should consult with their primary caregivers. The FDA also encourages people to follow special directions on Zantac packaging for safe disposal. Do not return medication to store in light of the coronavirus pandemic.
Below are some of the most common Zantac and ranitidine brand medications:
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