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Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuits

Law De > Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuits

Talcum Powder Lawsuits

Medical professionals were aware for many years that talcum powder was not safe for children and babies to breathe. Now, there are women claiming in lawsuits that such fine-powder products wound up giving them ovarian cancer. Action is being taken against Johnson & Johnson, which is the pharmaceutical giant that distributes talcum powder.

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Did you use talcum powder and develop ovarian cancer? See if you are entitled to some compensation.

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Ovarian Cancer and Talcum Powder

Two class-action lawsuits were filed in 2014 against the pharmaceutical giant that is Johnson & Johnson. Both suits make the claim that the business is responsible for giving a number of women ovarian cancer because of its talcum powder products, which are big sellers. These include Johnson’s Baby Powder as well as Shower to Shower.

Both of the class-action filings came a year after Deane Berg of South Dakota won a legal claim. It established that Johnson & Johnson was negligent because it didn’t warn her across her 30 years of using Baby Powder that it increased her risks of developing ovarian cancer. Berg got diagnosed with ovarian cancer specifically in 2006.

Combined, the litigation brought new scrutiny to the issue of Johnson & Johnson not warning its consumers, which are primarily women, regarding the risks and dangers of using its talcum-based powders.

Talcum Powder Studies

Ovarian Cyst

Women Using Talcum Powder

Women applied talcum-based powders to themselves for several decades. They also dusted their private areas or sprinkled talcum powders onto sanitary pads and undergarments. The intention was usually to keep groin areas cool, comfortable, and free of vaginal odors. Also, many women had reproductive tract exposure to talcum powder due to diaphragms that were sprinkled with talcum powders. Condoms were also sometimes coated with the substance.

Medical Studies That Have Been Published

Although some of the research is conflicting, the majority of published studies do seem to point to a connection between women developing ovarian cancer when they use talcum powders long-term with the intention of managing or preventing chafing, odor, and moisture in their vaginal areas.

Have you suffered injury or illness following baby powder use? You might be entitled to compensation.

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A California Class Action Suit

Johnson & Johnson has a subsidiary that is responsible for researching, marketing, distributing, and then selling consumer products which are targeted at moms and their babies. Those products includes Johnson’s Baby Powder, and the subsidiary company is Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies.

Mona Estrada of Stockton, California, filed a class action suit on April 14 in the Eastern District of her state. It charged both Johnson & Johnson and its Consumer Companies subsidiary of the following:

Charges leveled against J&J:

-Violating the legal remedies of consumers
-Breach of the implied warranty
-Violation of the Unfair Competition Law
-Violation of the business and professions code

Mona Estrada's Claim

Estrada makes the claim that Johnson’s Baby Powder is not a safe product, highlighting the fact that multiple studies have documented a 33-percent increased rate of ovarian cancer in women who apply talcum-based powders to their genitalia as compared to women who didn’t use such products. She claims that Johnson & Johnson was aware of the risks of powder products that use talc as a primary ingredient, and yet they did nothing to warn their consumers of the potential dangers when using the product for odor, sweat, and moisture management.

Cases of Extended Usage

Estrada made use of Baby Powder from around 1950 until 2013. However, she does not have any ovarian cancer. As stated by the law firm representing her, she filed a claim on behalf of not only herself, but also other women.

Research Citations

Estrada’s lawsuit cites research dating as far back as 1961 illustrating the hurtful effects of using talcum powder. She also cited a long list of additional studies linking talcum powder and cases of ovarian cancer.

Illinois Class Action News

A month following Estrada’s claim, a resident of Illinois filed her own class-action claim against both Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary. Barbara Mihalich filed in Illinois’ Southern District, and makes the claim that defendants were in violation of the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practice Act. She claims that the companies unjustly profited from selling their talc products. As with Estrada, Mihalich is free of ovarian cancer and doesn’t claim personal harm from the products, but does pursue litigation on behalf of other women.

Berg v J&J

Deane Berg used J&J talcum-powder products as feminine hygiene products for over thirty years to ease her chafing. A late 2006 pelvic exam showed her ovaries clotting blood, and further testing resulted in her diagnosis of ovarian cancer.

Her lawsuit claims that talc from Johnson & Johnson products caused her ovarian cancer, and that they should have had a warning on the products regarding the association of talc and increased risk of ovarian cancer, considering that women use them to manage odor and moisture concerns in their genitalia.

Berg had cancerous tissues extracted from her body and reviewed by a trio of doctors. They found that talc particles were embedded in those cells, and from that they drew the conclusion that talcum powder was a contributor to the cancer. One of the doctors was Daniel Cramer of Harvard University, and he’s got three decades of experience in studying the connection between ovarian cancer and talcum powder. He testified that talcum powder was probably a significant factor in over ten thousand annual instances of ovarian cancer.

Berg won her claim of J&J negligence, but the win was not as big as some might have hoped. The court did rule there was no conspiracy, and the jury did not assign liability to J&J. No financial damages were awarded, and an appeal for damages was denied.

Manufacturers Did Not Provide Warning Labels

Even though there was growing evidence of adverse health effects when talcum powder saw genital use, the biggest manufacturers of various talcum powder products didn’t warn their consumers of the possible dangers.

Attorneys from coast to coast are going over possible cases of individuals who think they were harmed by the use of talcum powder. That’s a strong signal that any business that manufactures such products should be ready and prepared for additional lawsuits getting filed against them in the near future.

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