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Are there cancer-causing toxic chemicals in talc?

Johnson & Johnson has been making household products for more than 100 years. Consumers here in Kentucky and across the country tend to trust that the products the company makes will not harm them, but it appears that at least one of its products may contain toxic chemicals that could cause ovarian cancer in women after prolonged use. At least four cases in one state and one recent case in another state resulted in findings that the company's Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower talc products are dangerous to women.

In the most recent verdict from a court on the West Coast, a 62-year-old woman won her lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson in which she alleged that the talcum powder she used daily since the age of 11 gave her ovarian cancer. She had alleged that the company failed to warn women of this potential danger and ignored studies indicating that the products could be unsafe and are linked to cancer in women. The jury's verdict was for $4.17 million of which $3.47 million is in punitive damages.

This recent verdict is significant because it took place in California. The four additional verdicts were in Missouri within the last two years. One other case in Missouri is on hold because of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling making it difficult for claimants from out-of-state to join state court lawsuits in "plaintiff friendly" jurisdictions. This latest out-of-state verdict shows that the problem is not limited to just one state. Women throughout the country are encountering this same issue.

In fact, there could be women here in Kentucky who are unaware of the cancer-causing potential of Johnson & Johnson's Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower products. A diagnosis of ovarian cancer would be devastating for any woman, but if she were to discover that the talcum powder she used for decades was responsible, legal action may be appropriate. The potentially toxic chemicals in these household products could be wreaking havoc on hundreds of thousands, or even millions, of lives, and they have the right to know, along with the right to restitution for any damages incurred from their use.

Source: Bloomberg, "J&J Loses $417 Million Talc Verdict in First California Case," Margaret Cronin Fisk and Edvard Pettersson, Aug. 21, 2017

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