OTTAWA – Heartburn medication, sold over the counter under various generic names and brand names like Zantac, is being recalled due a potential drug impurity.
Four drug companies have already pulled the products containing ranitidine as a precaution and have agreed to temporarily stop distributing the drug.
It’s believed the drugs may contain unacceptable levels of N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA).
NDMA is classified as a “probable” cancer-causing substance through long-term exposure to unsafe levels. Health Canada notes that we are exposed to low levels of NDMA in foods and drinking water and is not expected to cause harm when ingested at very low levels.
If you have the heartburn medication, Health Canada says to speak to your doctor or pharmacist. But those on a ranitidine prescription should not stop taking it unless you’re told to by a doctor.
Health Canada is still investigating and figure out whether there is a risk to Canadians.
For the products, lot numbers and other information on the drugs being recalled, click here.