Over-The-Counter Heartburn Drug Zantac Pulled From Shelves In U.S.

In this photo illustration the Zantac tablets, The U.S. Food

In this photo illustration the Zantac tablets, The U.S. Food

Drugmaker Sanofi announced a recall of the over-the-counter heartburn drug Zantac over concerns the medication may contain low amounts of a cancer-causing chemical. The decision comes one month after the Food and Drug Administration announced that it detected a probable carcinogen called NDMA in Zantac and the generic versions of the drug.

The recall only impacts Zantac being sold in the United States and Canada. The company says that Zantac sold in Europe comes from a different supplier and is not contaminated.

"Due to inconsistencies in preliminary test results of the active ingredient used in the U.S. and Canadian products, Sanofi has made the decision to conduct the voluntary recall in the U.S. and Canada as the investigation continues," the company said in a statement.

After the FDA made the announcement, several stores, including Walgreens, CVS, and Walmart, pulled the drugs from their shelves, while companies that manufacture the generic versions of the drug issued voluntary recalls of the medication.

The FDA advises anybody who uses the over-the-counter version of Zantac to treat heartburn to find an alternative medicine that does not contain ranitidine. Anybody who is taking the prescription-strength version of the drug should contact their doctor to find an alternative medication.

Photo: Getty Images