Can Talcum Powder Cause Ovarian Cancer?

There have been at least two lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson in the past year regarding their talcum powder products, including Baby Powder and Shower to Shower. The juries involved in those suits determined that not only does talcum powder likely cause cancer, but Johnson & Johnson knew about the link and said nothing. The major argument in those suits is that Johnson & Johnson should have warned customers about the potential link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer, and the key question is going to be: Can Talcum Powder Cause Ovarian Cancer?.

Can Talcum Powder Cause Ovarian Cancer?

Can Talcum Powder Cause Ovarian Cancer?

According to several studies, there appears to be a connection between long-term use of talcum powder on the genital area and contracting ovarian cancer. Because Johnson & Johnson marketed its products for this specific use, these studies are obviously a problem for the pharmaceutical and consumer product company.

Talcum powder contains talc, which is a mineral that contains oxygen, silicon, and magnesium. There are two types of talc. One of these contains asbestos. This type of talc, however, has been banned from homes since the 1970s.

Talc that contains asbestos has been known to cause cancer if it is inhaled, but researchers have not made conclusive findings regarding the asbestos-free talc. Nonetheless, there are studies that conclude that even asbestos-free talc can cause ovarian cancer if the powder particles become trapped in the ovaries. These studies range greatly on the degrees of increased risk—from 92 percent to 24 percent, but do seem to show that talcum powder can cause ovarian cancer.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies the genital use of talc-based powder as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.” The term “carcinogenic” means that the substance has the potential to trigger cancer cell growth.

There are also studies that indicate that there is no link at all. However, there is enough of a potential risk that products like Baby Powder should not be used on or near the genital area. It is also likely enough of a link that companies like Johnson & Johnson should have warned their consumers about the risk.

Talcum Powder and Other Cancers

The American Cancer Society reports that there may also be an increased risk of lung cancer and other residuary diseases for those who are around talc frequently. However, this does not apply to the cosmetic use of talcum powder.
Other cancers are generally not a risk with use of talcum powder. Nevertheless, there are studies that are considering possible links between endometrial (uterine) cancer in some women who are past menopause. This possibility will be of keen interest for future research.

Getting Legal Help After an Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis

If you or a loved one used talcum powder and was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, you have rights and you have options. Call us today at 877-810-4067 for a free legal consultation, or fill out the form above so we can get back to you. There is no cost, no obligation, and every call is completely confidential.