What You Need to Know About NDMA | Valsartan Cancer Risks

What You Need to Know About NDMA

May 29, 2020 | By O'Connor Acciani & Levy
What You Need to Know About NDMA

If you are an individual who is currently taking Valsartan for high blood pressure or ranitidine for heartburn, you may find it beneficial to test yourself for the presence of n-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). NDMA is a probable human and known animal carcinogen. Several drugs have been recalled because they were contaminated by the NDMA chemical, so it is important to check your medicine to ensure that you are not taking a dangerous medication.

What is NDMA?

NDMA is a volatile organic compound that can form unintentionally during industrial processes. Often, this chemical is a byproduct of adding chlorine to drinking water to disinfect it. Moreover, NDMA can be formed through natural processes, such as a person’s body absorbing a drug. An active ingredient in drugs is ranitidine, which is commonly used in Zantac. Ranitidine is a medication that contains nitrate and dimethylamine, which are the two elements needed to form NDMA. The chemical structure of ranitidine makes the substance highly capable of producing this byproduct. Between September and December 2019, major drug companies like Sandoz, Apotex, Perrigo, Novitium, and Lannett recalled their ranitidine products due to the risks associated with taking the medication. A study by Valisure Online Pharmacy discovered that when a tablet of ranitidine is ingested, it reacts to the gastric fluid in a person’s stomach and creates 304,500 nanograms of NDMA. This is concerning, as the FDA states that any intake of more than 96 nanograms a day is unsafe.

Carcinogen Classification

According to the EPA, NDMA is a B2 carcinogen. This means that the government agency does not have enough data on the effect this compound has on humans, but they do have an adequate amount of animal data that suggests it is carcinogenic. The tests showed that NDMA exposure caused animals to develop tumors in their liver, respiratory tract, and blood vessels. Exposure to NDMA could lead to adverse health effects. For example, when Valsartan is exposed to NDMA, a person could develop prostate, colon, stomach, intestinal or pancreatic cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, leukemia, or multiple myeloma. Like Valsartan, NDMA exposure in ranitidine has been shown to lead to multiple diseases. Some of the side-effects of exposed ranitidine are cancer in the stomach, small and large intestines, kidney, bladder, liver, prostate, pancreas, esophagus, and colon, as well as leukemia, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and multiple myeloma.

Speak with Our Experienced Attorneys Today

If you or a loved one has been taking Valsartan or ranitidine, you may have the right to pursue compensation for damages. Defective medications can cause you serious harm, and could be grounds for a class action lawsuit. If you are taking a drug that has been recalled, you may find it comforting to speak with our Cincinnati dangerous drugs attorneys. We at O’Connor, Acciani & Levy can discuss your situation with you and inform you of whether you have a valid case. Additionally, our legal team has the experience and resources needed to pursue a defective drug claim and may be able to aid you with your fight toward justice.