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The FDA Recommended Protein Pump Inhibitor Drugs Like Prilosec And Nexium That May Damage Health More Than Zantac

Zantac users were left out in the cold when their favorite heartburn drug was unexpectedly recalled

Thursday, June 23, 2022 - Millions of Americans were left in limbo two years ago when their favorite brand of heartburn and acid reflux medicine could no longer be found on store shelves. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recalled all forms of ranitidine, Zantac being the best-selling brand, on April 1, 2020, after online drug testing pharmacy Valisure discovered levels of carcinogenic NDMA thousands of times greater than the levels the FDA deemed safe. To be sure, the FDA has issued a statement to the effect that they thought the elevated levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) may have been due to Valisure's faulty testing methods that overheated the test samples and did not reflect the body's internal temperature, or the temperatures to be expected during shipping and storage. In response to consumers that continued to need heartburn relief, the FDA recommended that Zantac customers switch to protein pump inhibitor drugs (PPI) that did not test positive for high levels of NDMA. According to DrugWatch, "The FDA recommends Prilosec, Nexium, and Prevacid as prescription-strength Zantac alternatives because it hasn't found any NDMA in these PPIs. As a result of the FDA's recommendation, millions of people started using PPI drugs Prilosec and Nexium to help alleviate their gastric discomfort.

Unfortunately, switching from one heartburn drug to another may have been like jumping from the frying pan into the fire. According to, "Thousands of Proton Pump Inhibitor lawsuits have been filed around the country by plaintiffs who allege that PPI drugs like Nexium and Prilosec caused them to develop permanent kidney damage, bone fractures, and interstitial nephritis. As of April 2022, there are over 13,000 Nexium and Prilosec kidney damage lawsuits pending in a class action MDL."

PPI drugs are more potent than H2 histamine acid blocker drugs like ranitidine but take longer to work. PPI drugs block the production of hydrochloric stomach acid and need to be taken in advance of developing heartburn symptoms therefore they appeal to those suffering from gastrointestinal reflux disease (GERD), a condition that is predictable. PPI drugs lessen the ability to pump acid into the stomach. Heartburn and acid indigestion sufferers should take PPI drug at least a day before they are required to start working and will block stomach acid production for up to 24 hours. Former Zantac users are further urged to consult with a heartburn medicine cancer specialist before making the switch. The 13,000 Nexium and Prilosec lawsuits join more than 125,000 cancer sufferers who have registered to file Zantac cancer lawsuits against Sanofi, the maker of Zantac, for failing to warn users of the cancer risks of ranitidine. NDMA is believed to be "probably carcinogenic" by the World Health Organization and is linked to users developing bladder cancer, colon cancer, and prostate cancer. Lawsuits allege that Sanofi knew or had an obligation to know about ranitidine being an unstable molecule that could degrade into NDMA when heated.

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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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