Over the last few months, we’ve been fed a lot of information by the media about talcum powder and its link to ovarian cancer. And the reason we’ve been hearing about this topic is because more than 1,000 women have filed product liability lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson and talc miner, Imerys, alleging that the talcum powder products they used for decades in their genital areas caused their ovarian cancer. Two juries in St. Louis have awarded plaintiffs and their families a total of $127 million in compensation. There are still about 1,000 talcum powder ovarian lawsuits pending and many more are being filed as we speak.
Here are four things you need to know about talc, its link to ovarian cancer and how you can seek compensation if you or a loved one has been affected:
1. What is talc? Talc is a mined mineral composed of hydrated magnesium silicate. In addition being commonly used in hygiene products such as baby powders and adult face powders, it is also included in the manufacture of paints, paper, rubber, roofing and ceramic materials. As a powder, talc absorbs moisture and helps cut down on friction, making it useful for keeping skin dry and helping to prevent rashes.
2. Concerns over a possible link between talcum powder and cancer have been focused on whether people who have long-term exposure to natural talc fibers at work such as miners, are at a higher risk of lung cancer from breathing in the fibers. There is also the question of whether the women who apply the talcum powder regularly in the genital area have an increased risk of ovarian cancer. Talc deposits are often interlaced with other minerals, which means the danger could be due to impurities rather than talc itself.
3. Even though some, including J & J’s lawyers, insist that the connection between talc and ovarian cancer has not been established 100 percent, studies since the 1980s have actually shone light on this link. A number of studies since have shown that talcum powder increases a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer by between 30 and 40 percent.
4. There’s a good reason that these products have not been recalled. The cosmetic industry is pretty much self-regulated and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not have the power to force the issue. So, the only way for consumers to have a say and expose the facts is by filing civil product liability lawsuits against these negligent manufacturers. J & J not only failed to warn consumers about the danger of talc, but also aggressively marketed its talcum powder products to women for feminine hygiene purposes.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer as a result of using talcum powder products, please contact an experienced talcum powder lawyer who can help protect your rights and help you secure the compensation you rightfully deserve.