Men and women have used talcum powder to reduce moisture on various parts of their bodies for decades. More commonly known as baby powder, talcum powder absorbs moisture and reduces chafing. Women have used it frequently for feminine hygiene, and plenty of people use it to stay dry in the Southern heat, but it turns out that talcum powder is potentially dangerous.
Studies have conflicting findings as to whether talcum powder alone causes different cancers. But as recent large lawsuits have claimed, talcum powder might have the potential to damage reproductive organs and cause internal inflammation for women who use or have used it daily. Men have also brought claims forward stating that it has caused mesothelioma. If you use talcum powder daily, keep reading to learn about the product, what the risks might be, and if you might be eligible to file a Louisville talcum powder lawsuit.
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What is Talc?
Talcum powder’s main ingredient is talc, which is what most research studies and lawsuits focus on. Talc is naturally mined from the earth, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). By itself, it is composed of magnesium, silicon, oxygen, and hydrogen. Other than moisture control, the FDA lists that talc is used in beauty products to prevent caking, make pigments opaque, and improve a product’s feel.
Talc is chemically related to asbestos, and for a while was also commonly combined with asbestos. As you’ve probably heard before, asbestos is toxic. Once studies showed that asbestos was not safe for people in any amount, talc was legally ordered to be asbestos-free starting in the 1970s.
Risks of Talcum Powder Use
Even though studies are not completely clear about the risks of talc, there are still possible risks if used daily. A study by the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (AJOG) showed that talc could travel inside women’s bodies as far as their upper genital tract, like the ovaries. It also revealed that talcum powder used by women for feminine hygiene increased the risk of ovarian cancer threefold.
Many other studies by reputable journals over the years report the same risks from using talcum powder. In a controlled experiment published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), 49% of women diagnosed with ovarian cancer reported exposure to talc. Although talc was not the only factor that caused their ovarian cancer, the daily use was found to be linked to cancer.
More recently, a study done by the American Association for Cancer Research in 2016 concluded that body powder was significantly associated with the risk of ovarian cancer. Other diseases caused by talcum powder could be endometrial cancer, lung cancer, and mesothelioma.
A 2014 study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, though, found no link between powder with talc and ovarian cancer. The discrepancies in findings of all these studies could be caused by talc that contained trace amounts of asbestos, even after it became illegal. If you use talcum powder daily, air on the side of caution and consult a doctor.
Products Containing Talc
Even though there are conflicting opinions on talc’s dangers, there are plenty of talc products involved in lawsuits where victims claim they contracted mesothelioma and other cancers. The problem could be that factories don’t test all of their products as frequently as they should, and so asbestos could go undetected. Here are some of the products that could be harmful:
- Clubman Pinaud Talc
- McKesson Baby Powder
- Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder
- Gold Bond Medicated Powder
- Cashmere Bouquet
Though not involved in lawsuits at the moment, other types of products that potentially contain talc include makeup, vitamins, supplements, deodorant, and some foods. A 2009 FDA study of talc-containing makeup products determined that there was no asbestos in these products. But the study did not go into whether or not the talc alone was dangerous.
Even though we still allow talc in the United States, it is cosmetically restricted in the European Union. Since it is inconclusive if talc itself is harmful, make sure that any products you use that contain talc are asbestos-free. Also, don’t use any products for the pelvic area that contain talc just as a precaution. If you’re in Louisville and have used any of these products and developed serious diseases or cancers from them, you could have a talcum powder lawsuit.
Talcum Powder in the News
Recent news has brought to light many cases against big corporations whose talc powder products might have caused consumers’ cancer. Johnson & Johnson claims their talc is safe, but recent lawsuits decided differently. Although Johnson & Johnson claims to test their talc for asbestos, they could be letting trace amounts slip by. According to the World Health Organization, there is no safe amount of asbestos—even microscopic amounts are harmful.
In March 2019, Johnson & Johnson was forced by a judge to award a California woman and her husband $25 million in compensatory damages and $300 million in punitive damages because the couple claimed that asbestos in their talc powders caused their mesothelioma.
Then in June 2018, Johnson & Johnson was forced to award 22 women and their families $4.69 billion over claims that asbestos in their talc products caused their ovarian cancers. The juries determined Johnson & Johnson were responsible because they did not warn consumers that their talc products could be dangerous. Approximately 14,000 similar cases have been filed.
Do You Have a Louisville Talcum Powder Lawsuit?
Have you developed mesothelioma, ovarian cancer, or lung cancer after using baby powder frequently? These serious diseases are life-altering, and nobody deserves to experience them. If you suspect talcum powder is the cause of your cancer, a product liability lawyer from our law firm to get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today, and Thomas Law Offices can focus on the legal side of things while you get treatment.