In February, a jury in Missouri awarded $72 million in compensatory and punitive damages to the family of a woman who died as a result of alleged talc-caused ovarian cancer.
Talcum powder, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower, is used for a variety of hygiene and cosmetic purposes. The powder is made of talc, a mineral containing magnesium, silicon and oxygen; and is recognized for its absorbent properties. According to a number of studies, and Johnson & Johnson’s own internal documents, there is a connection between exposure to talc particles and ovarian cancer when talc is regularly applied around the genital area.
For many years, scientists have studied the various ways in which talc may influence the development of cancer throughout different parts of the body. Despite that commercial products containing talc are free of asbestos, the mineral fibers are exceedingly difficult for the body to break down. Researchers have suggested that because of this property, and when used near the genitals, talc fibers can migrate into the ovaries and become embedded in the tissue—causing inflammation that can lead to cancerous tumors.
Recent reports indicate that more than one thousand lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson (J&J), which claim that the long term use of talc based products, such as Baby Powder and Shower to Shower, has resulted in the development of ovarian cancer. These lawsuits also allege that J&J knew of the link between Talc based powder and the risk of ovarian cancer.
The recent jury trial against J&J revealed that the company was aware of the potential risks as early as 1982, yet continued to heavily market its Baby Powder and Shower to Shower products. Because of evidence and internal documents supporting this notion, jurors found J&J liable for fraud, negligence and conspiracy.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and had continuously used talcum powder prior to, you may be able to seek compensation for your suffering. The Law Offices of Peter Angelos is currently reviewing claims of talcum powder related cancer in Maryland and across the nation. Contact us for more information, or to schedule a free consultation.