Diagnosed With Cancer from Valsartan Side Effects?
In July 2018, the FDA warned consumers throughout the United States that many version of generic valsartan and valsartan HCTZ drugs distributed in recent years may contain an impurity known as N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), which is a human carcinogen.
Side effects of NDMA in recalled valsartan pills may result in the development of:
- Liver Cancer
- Kidney Cancer
- Pancreatic Cancer
- Bladder Cancer
- Intestinal Cancer
The product liability lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are investigating potential valsartan cancer lawsuits for individuals and families nationwide.
All cases are handled on a contingency fee basis, which means that there are no fees or expenses unless a settlement is obtained for an injury caused by recalled valsartan side effects.
Recalled Valsartan Cancer Risks
Valsartan is an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB), and part of a class of drugs use to treat hypertension, or high blood pressure. Once sold under the brand name Diovan, it has been available as a generic drug for years.
On July 5, 2018 the European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced that it was recalling several valsartan products after NDMA was detected in batches of the active ingredient supplied by Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceuticals in China.
The FDA issued its own valsartan recall on July 13, 2018. The recalls have been expanded several times, impacting a number of different manufacturers that distributed valsartan pills with NDMA, which resulted from bad manufacturing processes.
N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) Side Effects from Valsartan
N-Nitrosodimethylamine forms due to reactions by chemicals called alkylamines. While it was once used as an ingredient in rocket fuel, it is no longer intentionally manufactured. However, it may be created as a byproduct of some chemical manufacturing processes, which is what U.S. and European investigators say happened with recalled valsartan products.
Fortunately, NDMA does not persist long in the environment, breaking down quickly when exposed to sunlight and only lasting a few months in soil. However, it could persist for long periods of time in medication tablets, which are kept out of direct sunlight.
At high doses, NDMA in Valsartan may be poisonous, causing severe liver damage, bleeding and death. NDMA is a known contaminant, meaning there are already set limits on how much NDMA is allowed in food. Recalled valsartan drug contained NDMA levels that exceeded “safe” levels for an estimated four years. The FDA has published a list of recalled products.
The FDA estimates suggest that taking the highest dose of valsartan containing NDMA over the past four years would have resulted in additional cases of cancer. According to study published in The BMJ in September 2018, exposure to NDMA increased the risk of cancer by nine percent.
While early studies and testing suggest the risks of cancer is low, the investigation into the potential side effects of valsartan NDMA exposure remains in the earliest stages and it appears likely that many individuals may have avoided a diagnosis if they had not been given contaminated pills.
NDMA has specifically been used to poison individuals in the past, and has shown high rates of toxicity in animal testing. In both cases, researchers noted the severe damage the chemical did to the liver, however it has been linked to an increased risk of other cancers as well.
Types of Cancer Side Effects Reviewed
Valsartan Cancer Lawsuits
The lawyers at Saointz & Kirk, P.A. are reviewing potential valsartan class action lawsuits, as well as individual cancer claims for individuals diagnosed following use of the recalled hypertension drugs.
As a result of the failure to follow proper manufacturing practices, individuals were exposed to a risk of cancer that would not have otherwise been associated with side effects of valsartan.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with cancer after taking recalled valsartan products, request a free consultation and claim evaluation. All claims are handled on a contingency fee basis, meaning there are never any out-of-pocket expenses and no fees unless a recovery is obtained.