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An Update On Zantac Cancer Multidistrict Litigation And Bellwether Trials

Details are emerging about the type of cases that will be the first to take place

Wednesday, January 12, 2022 - Those who have been injured by allegedly taking Zantac heartburn and acid reflux medicine and have filed heartburn medicine cancer lawsuits are being organized in multidistrict litigation by the type of claim they have. One of the purposes of MDL is to weed out claims that do not fit with the group as a whole. The primary group of plaintiffs alleged that taking Zantac every day for several years caused them to develop stomach, esophagus, bladder, colon, prostate, and most recently, breast cancer. This group is suing Sanofi, the maker of Zantac, for failing to warn them of the cancer danger from taking the medicine. The allegations stem from the ranitidine molecule, the active ingredient in Zantac, degrading when overheated to form N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), a deadly carcinogen. NDMA is found in the air, water, and soil in limited quantities and in processed meats like hot dogs, bacon, and salami. These plaintiffs or the estates of those who have died from their disease have filed Zantac cancer lawsuits and seek reimbursement for their medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, and loss of consortium. There are over 1800 plaintiffs (as of November 2021) in the Zantac MDL and over 125,000 more plaintiffs that have registered their intent to join the group. Zantac was the best-selling brand of heartburn medicine with about 15 million daily users when it was recalled about a year and one half ago making Zantac cancer potentially the largest mass tort lawsuit in US history.

Plaintiffs also intended to hold the makers of generic forms of Zantac accountable for failure to warn. They still may, however, the MDL judge decided that these plaintiffs did not belong in the first group that was also suing Sanofi. The judge cited state laws that prevent generic manufacturers from making changes to the drug or its packaging, including preventing companies from placing a ranitidine warning on the label, even if the companies wanted to.

A third group is suing Sanofi and has filed a class-action lawsuit that alleges that even though these plaintiffs do not have cancer, they must be medically monitored every six months to make sure that their Zantac cancer is detected at the earliest possible date. Intestinal and digestive tract cancer has a latency period of about ten years before the symptoms become noticeable. Early detection is the key to successfully treating Zantac cancer. The precise reason that ranitidine degrades to form NDMA is not buttoned up yet, but experts think that it has to do with being overheated during manufacture, transportation, storage of the product. MDL Judge Rosenberg excluded retailers like Walmart, CVS, and Rite Aid from exposure to Zantac cancer claims also. The Florida-based MDL is taking shape as prospective plaintiffs have had to complete a detailed questionnaire about the Zantac usages and cancer diagnosis. Lawyers have been asked by the judge to submit a shortlist of their best cases to be the first trials that take place sometime in 2023. Although Zantac cancer plaintiffs are coming from all over the US, the bellwether trials will only consider Florida residents.

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Lawyers for Zantac Heartburn Medicine Lawsuits

OnderLaw, LLC is a St. Louis personal injury law firm handling serious injury and death claims across the country. Its mission is the pursuit of justice, no matter how complex the case or strenuous the effort. The Onder Law Firm has represented clients throughout the United States in pharmaceutical and medical device litigation such as Pradaxa, Lexapro and Yasmin/Yaz, where the firm's attorneys held significant leadership roles in the litigation, as well as Actos, DePuy, Risperdal and others. The Onder Law Firm has won more than $300 million in four talcum powder ovarian cancer lawsuits in St. Louis. Law firms throughout the nation often seek its experience and expertise on complex litigation.

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