The need-to-know information for Ranitidine (Zantac)


Pearls and Fun Nuggets

1. Ranitidine used to be the used for long term management of acid reflux 🍕However, proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) have taken over this role.

2. Ranitidine has recently been recalled 😳In September 2019, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) learned that some ranitidine medicines, including some products sold under the brand name Zantac, contained a nitrosamine impurity called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), classified as a probable human carcinogen, at low levels.  Some products have since been recalled, but no immediate threat from Ranitidine has been identified.

3. It might drop your vitamin B12 😐 Elderly patients taking H2 receptor antagonists are more likely to require  supplementation than those not taking such drugs.[25]

4. It might also reduce the absorption of other drugs 😯  This is because some drugs require an acidic stomach to absorb correctly (azole antifungals, calcium carbonate).  H2 blockers tend to reduce stomach acid.[26]

5. Ranitidine might make you pop hot on a drug test 😅   It’s known for occasionally creating false positives for methamphetamine on some commercial drug kits.[43]

Patient Perspectives

“I’ve been on Ranitidine for almost 2 years it work great for heartburn, I take before food and it did reduce the bloat. But currently it has been recall….any suggestions on the replacement drug or any brand still available”


“After 9 months of horrible psychotic-type itching I finally was able to see a dermatologist who I believe has correctly identified the cause. He believes I have eczema. The stress level following a whole spine surgery probably caused the condition to surface and begin its damage. I started taking Benadryl on my own and it helped a lot. When he added the H2 blocker (Zantac) it has all but disappeared. Wonderful! Thank you so much!”


“This medication works well for me, if I take the prescription strength twice a day, everyday. Unlike many drugs in the same class, Zantac provides relief within thirty minutes to an hour. This, thus far, has worked for me. Please consult your medical provider for a treatment designed for you.”

Brandon Simpson, PA-C
Follow me
Latest posts by Brandon Simpson, PA-C (see all)