Several common heart drugs recalled in US: 5 things to know

The FDA recalled several medications containing valsartan, an active ingredient used to control blood pressure and prevent heart failure, July 13, a week after 22 other countries issued a recall.

Here are five things to know:

1. The recall is voluntary. It is due to a probable human carcinogen, n-nitrosodimethylamine, which was found in the products.

2. The U.S. recall includes versions of valsartan made by Major Pharmaceuticals, Solco Healthcare and Teva Pharmaceuticals.

3. Since valsartan is used to treat serious medical conditions, the FDA is advising that patients continue to take the recalled valsartan medication until they have a replacement product.

4. "We have carefully assessed the valsartan-containing medications sold in the U.S., and we’ve found that the valsartan sold by these specific companies does not meet our safety standards, said Janet Woodcock, MD, director of the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "This is why we've asked these companies to take immediate action to protect patients."

5. The U.S. joined Germany, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Hungary, the Netherlands, Austria, Ireland, Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Belgium, France, Poland, Croatia, Lithuania, Greece, Canada, Bosnia, Bahrain and Malta in issuing a recall of the products over a cancer risk, according to CNN.

Find the list of recalled valsartan products here.

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