Johnson & Johnson is facing a lawsuit filed on behalf of a woman whose daughter died of ovarian cancer, allegedly due to using talcum powder for feminine hygiene. The wrongful death lawsuit alleges that J&J failed to disclose that using talcum powder in the genital region can increase the risk of ovarian cancer. The plaintiff says her daughter used talcum powder for over 23 years and was diagnosed with ovarian cancer at the age of 43.
The lawsuit is among the latest to be filed against J&J over talcum powder. The litigation has gained more attention in light of two large verdicts issued this year. Talcum powder plaintiffs were awarded verdicts of $72 million and $55 million. The $72 million award was issued to the family of a woman who died of ovarian cancer. Jurors awarded $55 million to a woman suffering from ovarian and endometrial cancer.
J&J tried to have the $55 million verdict tossed out, but the verdict was upheld by the Missouri 22nd Judicial Circuit Court for St. Louis City.
J&J is accused of failing to disclose the risks of talcum powder use in the genital region, despite being aware of evidence. The plaintiff alleges that if her daughter were properly informed of the risks, she would not have used products such as J&J’s Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower.
Lawsuits filed over talcum powder allege that the fine talc particles can travel up the female reproductive tract and reach the ovaries. Allegedly, these particles build up over time and lead to inflammation that can trigger cancer growth.
Plaintiffs cite early studies showing talc particles embedded in ovarian tumors. The suits also refer to a 1982 study showing that talcum powder use in the genital region was associated with an increased risk of ovarian cancer. Dr. Daniel Cramer, who led the study, advised J&J to place warning labels on these products, plaintiffs allege.