An alarming lawsuit indicates that common baby powder, or talcum powder, may be responsible for some cases of ovarian cancer.
Johnson & Johnson is currently locked in a huge legal battle with a woman who has ovarian cancer, and the ramifications are huge. Eva Echeverria, 63, said she has contracted overian cancer because she’s just Johnson’s baby powder her whole life, a claim the company vigorously denies. But a jury recently awarded a staggering $417 million to the woman in a lawsuit.
It’s a shocking result that is causing many to question just how safe the seemingly harmless powder is for themselves and their children. It’s the biggest jury award yet against Johnson & Johnson, and more could be coming as the huge company wades through a huge amount of lawsuits, all the while denying that there’s any connection between its products and ovarian cancer. They will appeal the verdict.
And medical and cancer experts actually aren’t sure about the issue, and just how talc affects the human body. Some believe the powder is responsible for ovarian cancer, while others suggest there isn’t enough evidence that talc is dangerous. The American Cancer Society itself says studies on talcum powder have been mixed about the issue of ovarian cancer.
“Based on the lack of data from human studies and on limited data in lab animal studies, IARC classifies inhaled talc not containing asbestos as ‘not classifiable as to carcinogenicity in humans,'” the ACS says on its website. “Based on limited evidence from human studies of a link to ovarian cancer, IARC classifies the perineal (genital) use of talc-based body powder as ‘possibly carcinogenic to humans.'”