Talc is a mineral that is composed of different elements, mainly magnesium, silicon and oxygen. When crushed down into a fine powder, talc becomes talcum powder, a household item sold primarily to absorb moisture. Cosmetic products, including baby powder and facial powder, contain talcum powder and are sold worldwide. Although dangerous asbestos are now extracted from talc products for safety purposes, lingering talc fibers still pose a direct risk to consumers.
Each year, thousands of women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer due to the regular use of talcum powder on female genitalia. Studies dating back to the 1930’s began confirming the harmful nature of talc on human tissue. Despite the massive amount of evidence that talcum powder fibers have the potential to cause cancer in a woman’s body, companies like Johnson & Johnson still claim it is unnecessary to warn the public about the dangers of regular talcum powder usage.
The year before Evelyn Hampton was born, the first study appeared linking talc to ovarian cancer. But neither she nor her family were warned about this association. Instead they trusted Johnson & Johnson when the company promoted its talcum powder products as safe enough for everyday use. Hampton became a loyal customer. By 1982, when Hampton was 10, researchers conducted the first epidemiological study on genital use of talcum powder for feminine hygiene and found that women who used talc in this fashion had a 92 percent greater risk of developing ovarian cancer, Hampton claims. One scientist, Daniel Cramer, even ... Read More
Attorneys for a woman who claims that Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder products are contaminated with asbestos and contributed to her mesothelioma diagnosis said in closing arguments that the consumer health care giant and its talc supplier should pay the woman $29.2 million plus punitive damages because they sold talc products to consumers knowing they were tainted with cancer-causing asbestos. The Pasadena, California trial involving the case of Carolyn Weirick and her wife Elvira Escudero also names Imerys Talc America, Johnson & Johnson’s talc supplier. Defense attorneys argue that the companies are not to blame because the women’s case is ... Read More
Claire’s Stores Inc., removed nine talc-containing makeup products from its retail stores after a CNN affiliate reported that the products contained tremolite asbestos, a known carcinogen. If swallowed or inhaled, the mineral can cause lung damage and cancer, including mesothelioma, a particularly aggressive and deadly form of cancer. Claire’s said it conducted its own tests on the cosmetics, which turned up no asbestos. The company said it pulled the makeup out of an abundance of caution. The company also confirmed that the talcum powder is supplied by a certified asbestos-free European vendor. Claire’s announced that it was halting sales of ... Read More
Women who douche are nearly twice as likely to develop ovarian cancer compared to women who don’t douche, according to a study published in the journal Epidemiology. Douching has had a bad rap for years. Studies have linked such vaginal washing with a device to yeast infections, pelvic inflammatory disease and ectopic pregnancies, and other research has implied a link between douching and cervical cancer, reduced fertility, HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. The latest study, conducted by researchers with the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, is the first to link douching to ovarian cancer. The study tracked more ... Read More
On Monday a St. Louis jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $72 million to the family of deceased plaintiff Jacqueline Fox, who alleged the company’s talc-containing products contributed to the development of her ovarian cancer. Fox died at age 62 just before the trial began. She had been using Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower to Shower body powder for feminine hygiene for more than 35 years. Shower to Shower in particular was marketed by Johnson and Johnson for feminine hygiene with the memorable slogan “Just a sprinkle a day helps keep odor away.” When the company introduced the slogan in the ... Read More
Ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from gynecologic cancers in the United States and is the seventh most common cancer in women worldwide. It is most often not diagnosed until it has advanced to late stages. Its symptoms are vague and not always gynecological, so many women spend months either ignoring symptoms or seeing specialists who are unlikely to do pelvic exams and find themselves being treated for irritable bowel syndrome or urinary tract infections. This is one of the reasons that the disease has such a high mortality rate. Detection at its earliest stage will offer the ... Read More
Ovarian cancer is quiet in its coming, then often swift and shocking. Thirty-four-year-old Inverness, Scotland, resident Michelle Campbell went in for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome this January, but began chemo in April after an inoperable tumor was found, and lost her battle with cancer just after Christmas, less than a year later. Ovarian cancer, with vague symptoms and no early-detection screening method, is usually advanced when diagnosed. It is the leading cause of death from gynecologic cancers in the United States and is the seventh most common cancer in women worldwide. Doctors had initially dismissed the possibility of cancer because ... Read More
Ovarian cancer is the deadliest form of female reproductive cancer and can be developed by women at any age. The main reason for its deadliness is its difficulty to detect. In many cases, this disease it diagnosed when it is already too late for treatments to have a positive effect. Darlene Gibbon, MD, chief of Gynecologic Oncology, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, spoke recently to myCentralJersey.com about how important it is for women to educate themselves about ovarian cancer. Dr. Gibbon noted that although the cause of ovarian cancer is still unknown, it is imperative for women to be ... Read More
Georgia Tech researchers have teamed up with the Ovarian Cancer Institute to develop a diagnostic test for identifying ovarian cancer at its earliest stage. Early detection of ovarian cancer is key to survival. The disease has a 90 percent survival rate if caught early. However, symptoms of ovarian cancer often go undetected or misdiagnosed until it has spread, worsening the odds of survival. Because of this, ovarian cancer is the No. 1 most deadly cancer among women in the United States. Current screening methods, such as pelvic exams, ultrasounds and CA-125 blood tests do not offer reliable results. “It was ... Read More
A federal court has rejected Johnson & Johnson’s bid to keep three lawsuits from a pool of more than 200 alleging a link between the company’s talcum powder products and ovarian cancer, from returning to state court in St. Louis. Johnson & Johnson had removed the three lawsuits to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri claiming the lawsuits were “mass actions” that belonged in federal court. But federal judges overseeing the lawsuits found otherwise, and ordered the lawsuits should stay in state court where they were filed. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed against the consumer ... Read More