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Recent Talcum Powder Lawsuit Awards $72 Million in Damages

Defective Devices / April 6, 2016

Baby Powder has long been a trusted personal hygiene aid. Recently, however, it has been linked to the development of ovarian cancer.

Many women were taught by their mothers to dust the powder on their pubic area for moisture absorption, or on their pads for a fresher feeling during their menstrual cycle, or even to dust their diaphragms with powder during non-use. Johnson & Johnson, the company behind Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower, claims that their talcum powder based products are perfectly safe for use. If a product is safe for use on infants, why not use it as an adult?

baby powder lawsuitThe American Cancer Society estimates that of the 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer that will be diagnosed this year, 15,000 of those women will die from the disease. Although rare, it is the most fatal of the female reproductive cancers largely due to the lack of noticeable symptoms. Ovarian cancer tends to go undetected until it has spread and by then is harder to treat. Dr. Daniel W. Cramer, head of Obstetrics and Gynecology Epidemiology Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, found a link in 1982 connecting ovarian cancer with talcum powder usage. His study found a definitive pattern that shows women who use talcum powders like baby powder or Shower to Shower on their genitals were more likely to develop ovarian cancer. Newer research shows talc fibers have been found in the ovaries of women who used talcum powder as a personal hygiene product and were later diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The talc acts as an irritant that promotes unhealthy cell growth and the cancer develops. To date, Johnson & Johnson has issued no warning of the dangers of using their talcum powder products.

“They made a conscious decision not to warn the customers they were using a very dangerous product.”

A recent St. Louis jury found that Johnson & Johnson’s products Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower were the cause of Jacqueline Fox’s fatal ovarian cancer. As such, the company is ordered to pay $10 million in actual damages and $62 million in punitive damages. Jere Beasley, a Fox family attorney, remarked “They made a conscious decision not to warn the customers they were using a very dangerous product.” Despite studies showing links between talcum powder usage and ovarian cancer, or even the evidence of talc fibers in women’s ovaries, Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower carry no warning. The trial revealed that in light of declining sales of talcum powder based products, executives at Johnson & Johnson aimed to gear advertising towards African Americans and Hispanics, making them the highest users of talcum powder. Rather than warning women against a product they’ve likely been using for most of their lives, Johnson & Johnson made plans to target women based on race and still deny any wrongdoing on their part.

If you believe you were injured by Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder or Shower to Shower, consider learning more about talcum powder lawsuits today.

Talcum powder is a dangerous product that can have disastrous effects. Johnson & Johnson has a responsibility to their consumers to place a warning label on their baby powder and on Shower to Shower to warn of the possibility of ovarian cancer when their products are used for personal hygiene. If you or a loved one used Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder or Shower to Shower and were diagnosed with ovarian cancer, call 1-800-701-3672 for a free talcum powder lawsuit review. Our knowledgeable legal team will review your case, free of charge.