Lawsuit Alleges Zantac Caused Bladder Cancer, After Nearly 20 Years Of Use

  • Written by: Irvin Jackson

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A California man indicates that side effects of Zantac caused bladder cancer after nearly 20 years of exposure to the popular heartburn drug, indicating that the active pharmaceutical ingredient ranitidine transformed into a cancer-causing chemical.

The complaint (PDF) was filed by Joseph John Balistreri in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on November 1, indicating that the drug makers Boehringer Ingelheim, Sanofi U.S. Services, Chattem, Inc., Pfizer, Inc. and GlaxoSmithKline, LLC sold tablets that exposed users to a potent carcinogen since 1983.

The lawsuit comes in the wake of Zantac recalls issued by various drug makers in recent weeks, after it was discovered that pills contained high levels of the chemical N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), which has been linked to reports of bladder cancer, stomach cancer, colorectal cancer, esophageal cancer and other cancers along the digestive tract.

Balistreri indicates that he began taking over-the-counter Zantac in 2000, and continued taking the pills, usually two to three times a week, into this year. He received a bladder cancer diagnosis in November 2018, but it was not until the recent recalls that he discovered that there was a link between Zantac and cancer.

“Had any Defendant warned Plaintiff that Zantac could lead to exposure to NDMA or, in turn, cancer, Plaintiff would not have taken Zantac,” the lawsuit states. “After being diagnosed with cancer, Plaintiff investigated what could have caused his cancer, but to no avail until recently when he heard about the connection of Zantac to NDMA and cancer.”

The link between Zantac and NDMA did not become publicly known until September 2019, when the online pharmacy Valisure released the results of independent testing, which found that each Zantac tablet may contain 29,000 times the daily permissible limit of NDMA set by the FDA.

Valisure filed a Citizen’s Petition calling for all Zantac to be recalled, leading most manufacturers and pharmacies to pull Zantac from the market.

The FDA recently acknowledged that the , indicating that excessive levels of NDMA have been detected. While the agency indicates that the levels were not as high as the Valisure tests, the FDA has stated that the recalls were warranted and urged consumers to switch to different heartburn medications.

Zantac (ranitidine) has been widely used by millions of Americans for treatment of heart burn and acid reflux. As individuals diagnosed with bladder cancer and other injuries contact Zantac lawyers in the coming weeks and months, it is widely expected that thousands of similar product liability lawsuits may be filed by former users of the heartburn medication.

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  1. Thu Reply

    I pray that I don’t have any symptoms for taking them !!!!

  2. Jean Reply

    I believe that zantac is pill that you can get addicted to, because you take 3or 4day. And still have the same thing happen to you. I have been taking zantac for over ten years

  3. Michelle Reply

    I had ureter cancer. And still have interstitial cystitis. I been taking perscription Zantac 15 years.

  4. Kelly Reply

    I am sick.

  5. Robert Reply

    I took over the counter zantac for years unlock then with bag notice had surgery and treated for bladder cancer at UAB hospital in Birmingham Alabama

  6. Charles Reply

    Bladder problems ongoing thru the veterans hospital

  7. Roberta Reply

    I have taken zantac for over 30 years and still have stomach problems nothing stop my stomach from hurtingand I have taken nexium and Prilosec nothing stops my stomach from her still have acid reflux real bad.

  8. Christine Reply

    Oh im so sorry i have no diagnosis praying to god for all these people who do i have been on it for 11 years now im sitting scared waiting for my life to be taken away.

  9. Rebecca Reply

    Zantac worked for me for the years I took it. I never dream that could of been the cause of my bladder cancer! I took it by prescription until it went otc.

  10. James Reply

    My urine and bowel movements are very different

  11. Delbra Reply

    I’ve taken Zantac in the past for approximately 4 years, prior taking Zantac I was on Nexium, but my new Health Insurance would not cover Nexium, my Doctor put me on Zantac. Now I am on Prilosec. I had my first Bladder cancer in 2007, and had recurrent of that type of Bladder cancer. Now I am facing another form of Bladder Cancer, that I was diagnosed with a few months ago.

  12. ARTHUR Reply

    8 years ago I had one most painful surgeries afterwards before I’m still having ghost pains

  13. Wayne Reply

    My mother took Zantac for years and she was she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after years of taking Zantac and he died within three months of diagnosis

  14. Nancy Reply

    For the past 3 years or 4 I’ve been taking ranitidine and before that I took Zantac for about 10 15 years something like that and it did not work and now has been eating has been eating away ever sent I thought I was helping the acid but it is not I was told. I have three times the amount of acid now that anybody else has I can’t eat without getting my food stuck

  15. Delois Reply

    I have taken several medication for acid reflux prescription and non prescription,Nothing seems to help at all. They said I had gol stones so they took my golbladder out and gave my medication for acid reflux I have to sleep on the bathroom floor a lot I’m so sick . Never was sick intell they took out my go bladder I took lot of Zantac so I don’t know if that is what started it or not

  16. Susan Reply

    I had breast cancer double mastectomy l had so many esophaguscopy’s Brookwood Hospital Dr Denton Shelby Hospital Alabaster Al Dr Marks The Dr would put me to sleep and dialate the pyloric muscle Prior to that no food got to intestines for scar tissue Horrible Horrible

  17. Larry Reply

    Started taking Zantec in 2000, had bladder cancer removed in 2007.

  18. Lee Reply

    I been taking zantac for years got problem prostate urinre stomach boblble up a lots hurts bad time to time

  19. Rosalie Reply

    I am currently taking Ranitidine 150mg twice a day and have lots of problems with my bladder but never put two and two together talked to my doctor about my issues with my bladder and he never seems to give a crap now I can’t control my bladder most time

  20. Renee Reply

    I took Zantac close to 10 years, then it stopped working.

  21. Elyanore Reply

    My Husband Mark Davies took this medicine everyday and now pass away from kidney failure 12-12-11

  22. Jennifer Reply

    I had been taking zantac since the mid 80’s. It was the only antacids that worked, so I continued to take it until they pulled it off the shelf. About 15 years ago, I came down with a chronic cough along with a large amount of mucus, that came up when I coughed. I was diagnosed with bronchiactisis, trachea myalgia along with a few other things that has to do with my pulmonary problems. I also developed a large amount of nodules in my lungs. I have a larger one in my right lung that has been slowly growing and has become more dense from 2011 to now. In my doctors notes, I read that his impression was that it could possibly be carcinoma. I haven’t found a Pulmonary doctor that would do a biopsy to see if it was or wasn’t cancer. I have suffered badly with horrible chest pains, that goes from the middle of my chest (between my breast) straight through to my back at times, but the chest pains hurt me day and night. I don’t sleep at night because of the mucus comes up and fills up my mouth, that wakes me up and I get rid of it. It’s the consistency of very thick glue. I have one bronchial tube that almost completely occluded. Several years ago I found a tumor in my right breast and had it removed before it got to the cancer stage. If you feel that any of this could be caused due to the Zantac,

  23. Mark Reply

    I was given Zantac years ago. Me, I just stopped taking it. Now I sounder IF I will get the systems. I have stomach issues, I will sue them for sure MML.jr.

  24. Sharon Reply

    My mother and I had been on zantac not sure how long but we both had acid reflux,that we suffered with for many years,I just lost my mother last year to Acute Kidney failure, out of loosing most all my family loosing my mother I don’t feel I’ll ever have peace, I miss her so much

  25. Jonathan Reply

    I’ve been taking Zantac for twenty + years and just been diagnosed with cancer .. sucks

  26. edward Reply

    Yes had bladder cancer and had bladder and prostate removed in 1-5-2015 due to cancer and I used zantac for about 10 to 15 years before that.

  27. Pat Reply

    I have bladder cancer too sounds exactly like me

  28. Brian Reply

    I don’t know if it’s cancer but will get my prostate and kidney problems checked soon.

  29. Jack Reply

    I started taking remetadine in the doctor just wrote me 60 more for this month
    .I haven’t been able to get to doctor to be checked, but I’m having a lot of trouble with my insides. Lots of pain. My care Dr, is the VA in Baton rouge. I will get to the doctor as soon as I can. I’m 64 years old , and I know that some thing is very wrong.but the doctor is 60 miles away.I need to be seen .


  30. Dana Reply

    Started taking radinadin in 2014 and found out in serious 2019 that I have bladder cancer.

  31. Timothy Reply

    I have taken zantac for over 20 years and just recently started having major problems with my bladder and my prostate a few years back I had surgery on my colan and I wonder if it was caused by prolonged use of the zantac cause I hav had heartburn every sinse j was young i dont remember exactly when I started using zantac it seems like for ever it scares me to think it could be the cause of my health problems now

  32. Jessica Reply

    I developed interstitial cystitis.

  33. Jade Reply

    Ive been on zatac for years it affects my stomach bad

  34. Richard Reply

    Me and my father both took Zantac for about 7yrs. My father died in 2015 from pancreatic cancer. When he was diagnosed, he was already at stage 4, and in 6 months he was gone, God Bless his Soul. I haven’t been diagnosed yet, to scared to go get screened. I do know that I’ve been feeling the differences in my system. I get major heartburn from just about everything I eat. I sometimes have to urinate real badd like all of a sudden, but when I finally make it to the toilet, it comes out real slow sometimes not at all, but I feel the pressure built up inside. It feels like I’m gonna Pop(explode).

  35. Dawn Reply

    I’ve been taking prilosec and simvistatin(zocor) for my gallbladder and acid reflux. But I’ve been have UTI’s on a regular basis every since. A LOT MORE THAN A NORMAL WOMAN SHOULD. LIKE EVERY MONTH AT LEAST FOR YEARS NOW.

  36. Charles Reply

    I’ve been taking Xanax since I’m 27 years old I’m 57 now I have kidney function at 35% I had tumors on my neck I had to be removed and I have one on my face right next to my nose

  37. Betty Reply

    My Dr had given me the janeric zantack I took for many years I got cancer in my breast I am still going through a lot trying to get them back to normal one more surgery hope this one is the last

  38. Stacie Reply

    My dad was diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2010. He took Zantac/Ranitidine to help him with his heartburn. My dad pasted away in 2012.
    I was talking Zantac/Ranitidine for my heartburn as well, for years as well. I hope that I don’t get cancer like my dad did.

  39. Jaymme Reply

    I would get a pain in my chest and it would immediately go right into my back. One night I had it so badly I went to the emergency and the next day I had to have my gallbladder removed. Then in 2009 I was diagnosed with stage 4 beat cancer. Was in surgery within a week getting a double mastectomy. I am single so as you could imagine I have lots of low esteem about my body and will not get intimate with any man. I am very self conscious about my women inabilities with getting sexually involved. Therefore I fear I will die alone without a partner too hold my hand. All because these people put something out on the market knowing it could do this to people. I hope they get what they deserve.

  40. Mickey Reply

    Yes my name is making Murphy and I had indigestion for years and I have to send texts over 10 years and as I’m listening heard about what they saying about Zantac I know my stomach and all is bothering me for a long time and I haven’t been to a doctor to check it out I’m going Monday to see what may be wrong I’m going to have a physical and let him know what I’ve been going through with indigestion and see what’s going on I just hope it’s nothing major

  41. Tim Reply

    I started to develop bad heartburn and acid reflux in the late 80s I took zantac up until 1992 three or four tablets a week and in 1992 I was diagnosed with bladder cancer I had a golf ball size tumor in my bladder that had to be removed it was extremely painful the doctor said he couldn’t find no reason why I developed bladder cancer I was in very good health at the time just released from the military

  42. Dustin Reply

    I was 1st prescribed zantac when I was a teenager by the family doctor. Now I’m 44 years old and have had stomach and throat issues for the past 15-20 years at least and zantac was the only thing that get rid of it. It’s been getting worse the last couple years and really bad the last six months. Nothing really calms it totally anymore and they seem to only work for a couple weeks then I have to rotate otc meds. I just thought it was a normal thing for me to deal with on a daily basis. I guess it’s time for me to go to your doctor right now about it? Any good referrals in the pacific northwest?

  43. Bonita Reply

    I was prescribed both Zantac and the generic rantidine ,and I had to have my gallbladder removed and at the time of the gallbladder surgery my Dr informed me that I have have nodules on my lungs. I am so afraid that it is cancer. I have problems eating, get lots of burning in my esophagus down into my stomach. I am scared of what this medication ha0s done to me.

  44. Laurie Reply

    My husband died from stomach/bladder cancer. He took Zantac right up until he died in1997.

  45. Patrice Reply

    I took Zantac for 13 years im 37 and have been diagnosed with colon cancer cervical and uterus cancer

  46. Shawn Reply

    It should be relatively easy to prove that it killed my father, stomach problems leading to diagnosed liver cancer that took his life in 2018. He was my bestfriend and the only reason I’m willing to even entertain the thought of filing is that he would want me to, however, I live in Michigan an they’re telling me that because I live in Michigan they’re exempt from liability and to me that sounds crazy. It shouldn’t matter where we live if my Dads life ended prematurely at the hands of these billionaires and that’s what the evidence suggests, we could live on Mars and IT SHOULD NOT MATTER. Someone please help me.

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