Over the decades, talcum powder has been put to a variety of uses. It’s been used for prickly heat. It’s been used to soothe babies’ delicate skin. It’s also been used by millions of women over the years for feminine hygiene purposes. But, what we are finding out, especially after two high-profile verdicts in St. Louis where juries handed multi-million- dollar verdicts to women who had suffered ovarian cancer as a result of using talcum powder to freshen up, is that these products can be extremely dangerous.
Link Between Talc and Ovarian Cancer
In 1991, Welsh scientists discovered particles of talc embedded in ovarian and cervical cancers. A report that came out earlier this year linked the use of talc on genitals with a 44 percent increase in invasive ovarian cancer among African American women. In fact, in 2006, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified talcum powder as a possible human carcinogen is used in the female genital area.
Talc is natural mineral that is composed of magnesium and silicon. Because of its soft texture, it is often used in cosmetic products. It prevents caking and absorbs more moisture. What many of us don’t know is that it’s added into some medicines and even chewing gum. Some women use talc in their inner thighs to prevent chafing while others sprinkle it on their underwear or sanitary napkins to stay fresh.
The link between talc and ovarian cancer has been known since 1982 when a Harvard University study found that women who used talcum powder were at twice the risk of having ovarian cancer than non-users. Those who used it regularly on their genitals faced more than three times the risk. Studies have shown that talc particles can move up to the ovaries through the urinary tract.
What Corporations Don’t Tell You
Johnson & Johnson and other corporations have known the truth about talc for decades. They’ve seen those studies. They are well aware of the high risk. But, they didn’t warn consumers. They didn’t put warning labels on their products. Instead, they doubled down and sold more of these products to unsuspecting consumers. They aggressively marketed to African American and Hispanic women who liked to use these powders for feminine hygiene purposes.
If you have these products in your home, do not use them. They pose a risk that is significant enough to discourage their use. If you have ovarian cancer as a result of using these talcum powder products, contact an experienced talcum powder injury lawyer who can help determine if you have a case.