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Talcum Powder Litigation Has Johnson & Johnson Irritated

A myriad of lawsuits have recently been filed against Johnson & Johnson for their baby powder products based upon the claim that the company failed to properly warn the public about the talcum powder’s potential to cause ovarian cancer. Currently, three state courts are overseeing talcum powder personal injury cases involving Johnson & Johnson. Over 200 cases are pending in New Jersey; 20 cases are pending in Missouri, and 60 cases are pending in California.

Talcum powder is made from the mineral talc. When talc is crushed into a powder, it can easily absorb moisture, oils, and odor, making it popular for use in bath and body products.

The most common uses of talcum powder include:

  • Additive to sanitary pads
  • Body powder
  • Foot powder
  • Medicated treatment for skin irritations
  • Dry shampoo
  • Deodorant
  • Feminine hygiene

Consumers of talcum powder have long assumed that the product is safe, choosing to not only use the product on themselves but their children as well. However, recent studies have shown that talcum powder may have a strong link to ovarian cancer.

The United States District Court for the District of New Jersey has agreed to an Organization Conference where a series of topics will be discussed in relation to the claims that Johnson& Johnson’s baby powder products have a link to ovarian cancer. In an effort to prove medical causation, a key question that will be asked is whether perineal exposure to talc can cause ovarian cancer.

A lower New Jersey court ruled that perineal exposure to talc cannot cause ovarian cancer after a two-week hearing took place in which primary experts from both sides provided testimony. The lower court ruled that the plaintiffs’ experts’ opinions on causation were not reliable in that the conclusions were based largely on a subset of studies which ignored larger studies that denied the association between talc and ovarian cancer.

To remedy, the District Court plans to hold a Science Day in which parties and their respective experts will present their arguments regarding the medical and science issues that surround the powder.

In 2016, Johnson & Johnson was found liable in two lawsuits which yielded $72 million and $55 million in damages.

Efforts to move St. Louis-based cases to New Jersey were rejected by the Missouri Supreme Court.

Medical malpractice can have devastating effects that last a lifetime. If you have been injured by a physician’s neglect, attorneys Charles Gilman and Briggs Bedigian will work to get you the full compensation to which you are entitled. Call 800-529-6162 today or contact them online for a free case evaluation. They handle cases in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

About the Author

Charles GilmanCharles Gilman
Charles Gilman

As managing partner and co-founder of Gilman & Bedigian, it is my mission to help our clients recover and get their lives back on track. I strongly believe that every person who is injured by a wrongful act deserves compensation, and I will do my utmost to bring recompense to those who need and deserve it.


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