Report: Johnson & Johnson knew its talcum powder sometimes had asbestos traces

Talcum Powder Linked to Cancer

Evidence appears to show that Johnson & Johnson turned over favorable test results to the Food and Drug Administration but withheld test results that showed the talc contained asbestos, a point cited by a New Jersey judge this year affirming a verdict against the company.

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What is the Talcum Powder Lawsuit?

The lawsuit involving talcum powder states the manufacturers have failed to warn users of the increased risk of ovarian cancer caused by using talc-based products for personal hygiene use. Specifically, the lawsuits claim that the manufacturers of talcum powder have known for more than 40 years there is a link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer. However, these companies intentionally made the decision not to warn women that the powder could cause cancer if it entered the ovaries through the vagina, uterus, and fallopian tubes after being applied to the genital area or on sanitary napkins, diaphragms, or condoms.

Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuits are currently being filed.

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Some talc is contaminated with a form of amphibole asbestos known as tremolite. This type of asbestos is related to crocidolite ("blue" asbestos) and amosite ("brown" asbestos), which have been established as the most carcinogenic varieties of asbestos. Unlike the latter two however, tremolite has never been mined or processed commercially.

Both talc and tremolite are created by the same geologic processes. Not surprisingly, talc deposits are frequently found near sources of tremolite. In the past, this went undetected since nobody was interested in mining tremolite. Many talc mines thus produced material highly contaminated with tremolite asbestos fibers, which then got into products made from talc.

Mesothelioma connection to Talcum Powder

Pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson finds itself the subject of two class-action lawsuits filed in 2014, both of which claim the company is responsible for giving women ovarian cancer through its high-selling talcum powder products, Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower.

Talcum Powder & Ovarian Cancer

The class-action filings came one year after South Dakota resident Deane Berg won her legal claim that J&J was negligent because it did not warn her during her three decades of Baby Powder use, that she could have a greater risk for developing ovarian cancer. Berg was diagnosed with that type of cancer in 2006.

Together, the litigations point to increased scrutiny on how responsible J&J is for not warning consumers – primarily women – about the dangers of its talc-based powders.

Johnson & Johnson is facing a number of lawsuits alleging that they failed to warn women about the risk of developing ovarian cancer when using these products near the genitals.