On October 27, 2016 a St. Louis jury awarded a California woman over $70 million USD in her lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson. She says that after years of using the brand's baby powder, she developed ovarian cancer.
Deborah Giannecchini of Modesto, California was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012. She believes that her prolonged use of their product lead her to develop the disease. In her defense, lawyers argued that the company should have warned the public about extended use of the powder.
"We are pleased the jury did the right thing. They once again reaffirmed the need for Johnson & Johnson to warn the public of the ovarian cancer risk associated with its product," said her lawyer, Jim Onder, to the Associated Press.
It isn't the first time concerns have been brought forward about the links between talcum powder and cancer. Although research on the connection between the two has found no link or a weak one, there are still concerns.
Deborah's lawyers cited research that connected talcum powder to ovarian cancer in the 1970's, arguing that studies prove that women who use talc consistently on their genital area have up to 40 percent risk of developing ovarian cancer.
The American Cancer Society's website explains that although there might be a link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer, the studies have mixed results.
"It is not clear if consumer products containing talcum powder increase cancer risk. Studies of personal use of talcum powder have had mixed results, although there is some suggestion of a possible increase in ovarian cancer risk. There is very little evidence at this time that any other forms of cancer are linked with consumer use of talcum powder."
According to The Globe And Mail, almost 2,000 women have filed similar suits to Deborah's and the numbers have been climbing since the success of two other cases, also from St. Louis, were advertised. In the first, $72 million USD was awarded in February to relatives of an Alabama woman who passed away from ovarian cancer; the second, $55-million USD was given in May to a South Dakota survivor of the same disease.
Do you use Johnson's Baby Powder? What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!