Sanofi, a pharmaceutical company based in France, is facing litigation due to the presence of a carcinogenic chemical in its heartburn medication Zantac. Patients who took prescription or over-the-counter Zantac reported a higher risk of developing all types of cancer, including liver and bile duct cancer.
If you developed liver and bile duct cancer as a result of your Zantac use, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Shapiro Legal Group, PLLC represents Zantac patients nationwide in their lawsuits against Sanofi, and our Zantac injury attorneys will fight tenaciously for your right to recovery.
Why Select Our Law Office
- Our firm specializes in defective drug and medical device claims, ensuring we have the skills and knowledge necessary to pursue your claim to the furthest extent.
- Over our 20 years of legal experience, we have developed connections with expert witnesses who can provide valuable testimony on your behalf.
- Our attorneys believe in transparency and responsiveness. We will always inform you of case updates, answer any questions you may have, and help you understand how to prepare for each stage of your claim.
Common Symptoms of Liver Cancer
The liver is an organ that lies in our upper abdomen and is responsible for filtering toxins out of your body. Several types of cancer can appear in the liver, and you may not experience symptoms until the cancer is more advanced.
Common symptoms of liver cancer include the following.
- Unexplained weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Pain in the upper abdomen
- Nausea and vomiting
- White, chalky stools
- Yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice)
- Swelling of the abdomen
- Weakness and fatigue
The liver also produces a fluid called bile, which plays a role in digestion. Cholangiocarcinoma, or bile duct cancer, is a type of cancer that forms in the tubes that connect the liver to the gallbladder and small intestine. Bile duct cancer causes similar symptoms as liver cancer, including jaundice, white-colored stools, unexplained weight loss, fatigue, and abdominal pain. You may also experience intensely itchy skin.
Who Is Most At-Risk for Liver Cancer?
Liver cancer develops when you experience damage to your DNA, leading to the uncontrollable development of tumors, or a mass of cancerous cells. Multiple factors contribute to liver cancer, and people with certain comorbidities are at a higher risk than others.
These liver cancer risk factors include the following.
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease
- Chronic hepatitis B or hepatitis C infections
In addition, people who consume more than the recommended amount of alcohol for a long period of time are at a higher risk for liver cancer. People who repeatedly consume aflatoxins, or molds that grow on improperly-stored crops, may also be at an increased risk.
How Does Zantac Cause Liver Cancer?
Zantac raises the risk of all types of cancer, including liver and bile duct cancer, due to the presence of NDMA in its medication. In September 2019, an online pharmacy company found this chemical in certain batches of Zantac and reported their findings to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
NDMA is no longer commercially produced by the United States. This chemical can be found in certain foods, such as cured meats, as well as tobacco smoke and as a byproduct of certain chemical reactions. Researchers often use NDMA to induce tumors in rats and mice for laboratory tests. Humans can safely consume 96 nanograms of NDMA per day; however, studies show repeated exposure to dangerous NDMA levels may lead to cancer-causing DNA damage.
The FDA launched an investigation into the presence of NDMA in Zantac, and in April 2020, the agency asked for the recall of Zantac and all products containing its generic version, ranitidine. Their findings discovered that the presence of NDMA in ranitidine-containing products, like Zantac, increases over time and when stored at higher than room temperatures. NDMA is a natural by-product of ranitidine ingredients.
Based on these findings, former Zantac patients may be exposed to dangerous levels of NDMA and develop multiple types of cancer, including liver and bile duct cancers. The agency recommends patients who use prescription or over-the-counter Zantac cease use and safely dispose of the medication.
Liability for Zantac Liver and Bile Duct Cancer
All drug manufacturers have a responsibility to ensure their products are safe to use and warn consumers of potential risks. Unfortunately, some manufacturers breach this duty of care, leading to dangerous consequences for their consumers. However, former Zantac patients can claim compensation for their damages through a product liability lawsuit against Sanofi based on its failure to provide adequate warnings.
Failure to warn claims allege that Sanofi has a responsibility to warn patients and physicians of all risks, including the presence of carcinogenic NDMA. Sanofi failed to include information about the cancer-causing agents on Zantac’s warning labels. These lawsuits allege that if patients and physicians knew about these risks, they would have not taken or prescribed the drug.
Do I Have a Case?
A product liability lawsuit against Sanofi allows you to collect compensation for your cancer-related damages. This may include past and future medical care, lost wages, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.
Courts hold drug manufacturers to a strict liability standard, which does not require the presence of negligence or the intent to commit harm in order for a company to be liable for a patient’s damages. However, only certain Zantac patients qualify for litigation against Sanofi.
You may have grounds for a lawsuit if you meet the following criteria.
- You took name-brand Zantac manufactured by Sanofi, not a generic version.
- You received your cancer diagnosis and took your last dose of Zantac within the past 10 years.
- You took over-the-counter or prescription Zantac for at least one year at a minimum of 300 milligrams per week.
- You began to use Zantac no less than three years prior to your cancer diagnosis.
- You do not smoke cigarettes on a regular basis.
Contact Shapiro Legal Group, PLLC
If you developed liver or bile duct cancer after taking Zantac, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit against Sanofi. The attorneys at Shapiro Legal Group, PLLC represent injured Zantac patients nationwide, partnering with leading personal injury and mass tort firms to provide comprehensive representation.
We will fight tenaciously to secure compensatory damages on your behalf. Contact Shapiro Legal Group, PLLC today to schedule your free consultation with our Zantac liver and bile duct cancer attorneys.