Many West Virginia residents have taken Zantac, a popular medication that helps to alleviate a variety of digestive problems. This drug has been available by prescription and as an over-the-counter medication. The active ingredient in Zantac is ranitidine. Unfortunately, a link between ranitidine drugs and certain types of cancer has been shown. When people think that their injuries were caused by taking Zantac, there are several steps that they should take to help to determine whether they have grounds to file a claim.
Showing that Zantac was taken for a long enough period
The first step that people should take is to make sure that the substance that they took was Zantac and that they took it regularly for an extended period. People who were prescribed Zantac can verify this with their medical records. People who purchased Zantac over-the-counter may need to check receipts or find witnesses who can verify that Zantac was what they took. If they discussed taking Zantac with their doctors as an over-the-counter medication, the medical records may contain a notation. They will also need to show that they regularly took Zantac for an extended period. Taking Zantac a single time will not be sufficient to establish a legal claim.
Confirming a related diagnosis and a latency period
Once people have established that they took Zantac regularly, they will then need to show that their injury is likely related to the drug. Zantac is associated with a number of different types of cancer. However, people who have risk factors for specific types of cancer may have difficulty showing that their diagnoses are related to Zantac. For example, smokers may have a hard time linking lung cancer to Zantac instead of smoking. Generally, there must also be a long period between taking the drug and developing cancer. Cancer will be unlikely to show up soon after taking Zantac. Instead, the latency period should be at least a year.
People who believe that their diagnoses may be related to taking Zantac after taking these steps may want to talk to experienced mass tort attorneys. The lawyers may review the medical records and other evidence to assess whether a valid basis exists for a claim.