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The Talcum Powder Cancer Link

Talcum powder, the key ingredient in Johnson & Johnson baby powder has been implicated in numerous cases of ovarian cancer. Over a thousand women have filed suit thus far, claiming that J&J knew about the risks specifically posed by daily application of talcum powder and did not issue a recall nor did they warn consumers in any way. The talcum powder suits are the latest in a string of civil actions against the company for problems with their drugs and medical devices.

The Science

Two major studies of the connection between talcum powder and ovarian cancer have produced inconclusive results. A 2010 study of 200,000 women found 721 cases of ovarian cancer. That was enough to establish a potential link between talcum powder and one form of ovarian cancer. Another study of 11.933 women failed to detect a link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer due to the influence of other study variables. In spite of those results, some women have begun to file suits.

Concerning scientific research related to talc dates back about 46 years. British research examining ovarian tumors found talc particles “deeply embedded” in 10 of the samples. That study was published in 1971. A 1982 study in the British journal Cancer Provided the first statistical evidence of a link between genital use of talcum powder and ovarian cancer.

Talc, the chief ingredient in talcum powder, is the softest mineral on earth. It consists of silicon, magnesium, and oxygen. J&J mixes a trace of fragrant oils with the talc to produce the signature scent of their Baby Powder. As a cosmetic, the talc and fragrant oil mixture is not regulated by the FDA. In spite of this, the company still has a legal responsibility to make sure the product is safe to use. Many individuals claim that Baby Powder and Shower to Shower are not safe.

The Lawsuits

Women have filed at least 1,200 suits against J& related to products containing talcum powder, specifically Baby Powder and Shower to Shower powder. There have been no medical lawsuits Savannah GA as of June 2016. Those claimants say that J&J knew about the risks and did not properly inform buyers. Millions of women have used Baby Powder on themselves or on their babies in recent years, so if the product poses a cancer risk, there is the potential for more lawsuits in the near future.

In February of this year, Johnson & Johnson was forced to pay $72,000,000 to the family of a Missouri woman, Jackie Fox who died of ovarian cancer. The jury found the company liable for negligence, conspiracy, and failure to warn consumers of the long-term hazards. Another trial in St. Louis, Missouri began in April.

Johnson & Johnson Product Liability Claims

Naturally, Johnson & Johnson has made statements defending its use of talcum powder, noting that it meets high standards of quality and compliance and that the judgments go against decades of science indicating that talcum powder is safe to use.

The talcum powder claims are the newest in a long list of product liability suits and judgments against the company according to a Bloomberg story on the ovarian cancer suits. The company paid a $2.2 billion fine related to illegal prescribing of the antipsychotic drug Risperdal and $2.8 billion to settle lawsuits related to the company’s artificial hips.

If you feel you may have suffered serious injury due to a defective product or device, contact us to discuss your case. Our attorneys have decades of combined experience handling medical lawsuits in Savannah GA. Tate Law Group specializes in holding entities accountable for their claims of beneficial effect when in fact their products may be harmful.


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