What Risks Do Pregnant Women Face Using Zantac?

Pregnant women are, by far, one of the largest demographics that use Zantac for relief from heartburn and similar conditions. About half of all pregnancies are associated with conditions such as acid reflux, at least for a short time as the mother carries her child. Zantac has been relied upon as a primary, over-the-counter (OTC) method of controlling symptoms of discomfort related to these health conditions. Yet, scientists’ recent discovery of NDMA contamination of this drug has flipped that widespread trust on its head.  To learn the risks of Zantac ingestion, specifically as they relate to expectant mothers, see the information below as provided by the Zantac settlement lawyers at Riddle and Brantley.

Specific Risks to Pregnant Women Using Zantac

Late last year, scientists discovered that Zantac, also known by the generic name, ranitidine, had been contaminated by the B2 carcinogen, nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). The concentrations of this chemical that were found in the OTC drug were strikingly high, at 47,000 nanograms, rather than the maximum limit of 96 nanograms, set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Still, although the risks are very real, a maternal-fetal medicine specialist from Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dr. Nicole Smith, assures expectant mothers that they do not have substantial reason to fear.

Dr. Smith has stated that the health risks of taking Zantac for pregnant women are relatively low. However, you should still take the recent scientific findings seriously and cease your consumption of the drug. The possible side effects of taking Zantac for pregnant women are listed below:

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Drowsiness
  • Headaches

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, stop taking the drug immediately, and consider replacing it with another method of relief. Reliable alternatives to Zantac include:

  • Atazanavir
  • Itraconazole
  • Ketoconazole
  • Indinavir
  • Iron salts

These are all types of H2 receptor antagonists, in the same family of drugs as Zantac. H2 receptor antagonists are designed to treat symptoms of many conditions related to the digestive system, such as indigestion, acid reflux, and stomach ulcers. Current knowledge cannot yet confirm whether the use of H2 receptor antagonists is 100% safe or not. For this reason, you must consult your physician before attempting to replace Zantac with any of the drugs listed above.

General Risks of Taking Zantac

Fortunately, since the recent discovery of the widespread contamination of Zantac, drugstores across the nation have removed the product from their shelves. Still, this does not negate the fact that millions of Americans have been exposed to the potential carcinogen.

NDMA has been linked to an extensive list of cancers, some of which are listed below:

  • Uterine cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Leukemia

While Dr. Smith has assured the public that the risks are relatively low for pregnant women, you must still keep these possibilities in mind and stop your consumption of Zantac immediately. If you or anyone you know has been diagnosed with cancer, or you have been increasingly suffering from the pregnancy-specific side effects of Zantac, contact a Zantac settlement lawyer right away. An experienced lawyer will guide you in your case, assisting you in determining who precisely should be held accountable for the decline in your health. Get in touch with a lawyer today to begin developing your case.

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