Bahrain’s National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA) announced that some ranitidine medicines, including some products commonly known as the brand-name drug Zantac, contain a cancer-causing substance called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) at low levels.
This comes after a study by the US Food and Drug Administration revealed that NDMA is classified as a probable human carcinogen (a substance that could cause cancer) based on results from laboratory tests.
Over-the-counter Ranitidine is approved to prevent and relieve heartburn associated with acid ingestion and sour stomach. Prescription Ranitidine is approved for multiple indications, including treatment and prevention of ulcers of the stomach and intestines and treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease.
The US FDA is not calling for individuals to stop taking ranitidine at this time; however, patients taking prescription ranitidine who wish to discontinue use should talk to their health care professional about other treatment options.