Johnson & Johnson filed a notice to remove to federal court two lawsuits filed against the company claiming its baby powder caused the two plaintiffs to develop ovarian cancer after using the powder for personal hygiene for several years.
The lawsuits, filed in late March and early April, name Johnson & Johnson, Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies Inc., Imerys Talc America Inc., and Walgreen Co. as defendants. Candace Lewis’s lawsuit claims she used Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower body powder on her genitals from 1981 to 2014. Judith Harlan claims she used the powder regularly for personal hygiene from 1964 until 2013. Both women claim the talcum powder products caused them to develop ovarian cancer.
The litigation claims that there are several studies, some dating back to the 1970s, that established a link between talcum powder and cancer. A 1982 study revealed a 92 percent increased risk in ovarian cancer in women who used talcum powder on their genitals. Since then, an additional 22 studies have confirmed this risk.
Years ago, a researcher contacted Johnson & Johnson urging the company warn consumers of ovarian cancer risk with genital use of the product and to advise women how to properly use the powder. The company refused.
Johnson & Johnson claims removing the lawsuits to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois is proper. Johnson & Johnson and its co-defendant Imerys are located in different states.
The lawsuits represent just a handful of cases against Johnson & Johnson and others claiming the companies knew their talc-containing products could cause cancer if used on the genitals but they refused to warn consumers of this risk.
Source: Madison St. Clair Record