The Risks of NDMA
N-nitrosodimethylamine, or NDMA, is a naturally-occurring chemical that can become carcinogenic if repeatedly ingested in large amounts. In recent years, the chemical has been discovered in various prescription medications, most notably in the antacid drug Zantac.
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NDMA is actually all around us– the FDA has established a safe intake limit of 96 nanograms per day. The primary sources of NDMA that people are most commonly exposed to include shampoo, cleansers, detergents, pesticides, tobacco, cured meats, and fermented foods. A common example is cooked bacon: the NDMA development occurs when nitrite preservatives react with amines and amino acids in the meat.
The chemical is categorized as a Group 2A carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer, and this designation means that it is “probably carcinogenic to humans,” based on research and animal testing.
In 2016, scientists at Stanford University experimented on healthy volunteers by measuring the NDMA in their urine for 24 hours. Then, they administered just one dose of Zantac and repeated the same measurements. On average, the level of NDMA was increased by up to 400 times. Researchers concluded that the severe uptick was directly related to ranitidine ingestion (the active ingredient in Zantac).
Furthermore, only a very small amount of substances are excreted in one’s urine, meaning that the true NDMA levels within the volunteers’ bodies was probably much higher.
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When ingested, NDMA molecules pass freely throughout the entire body, including the stomach, bloodstream, heart, lungs, and brain. As such, people who have been exposed to large amounts of NDMA, such as longtime Zantac users, will have an increased risk of cancer in just about any bodily system.
For these reasons, the FDA has ordered a recall of all Zantac products nationwide. Zantac users are being encouraged to seek medical counsel right away, and to come forward with any adverse diagnoses.
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If you or someone you know has used Zantac for an extended period of time and has recently been diagnosed with cancer, contact the trusted team of Las Vegas Zantac attorneys at Van Law Firm.
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