Talcum Causes 33 percent Increased Risk Of Cancer, Says Journal Anticancer Research
The medical journal Anticancer Research published an article in 2003 claiming that confirmed a 33 percent increased risk of ovarian cancer following routine use of the product by women.
Monday, November 23, 2015 -
One of the handful of ovarian cancer studies published by medical journals debuted in the journal Anticancer Research in 2003 and revealed significant ties between talcum powder and the increased risk of ovarian cancer for women who used the substance regularly. The study is now being referenced by hundreds of plaintiffs nationwide who claim that the pharmaceutical manufacturer Johnson & Johnson negligently marketed talcum powder without warning patients of the risks associated with the product.
The Anticancer Research study revealed that the use of talcum powder increased the risk of contracting ovarian cancer by 33 percent. This figure was derived following the examination of nearing 12,000 subjects that were involved in 16 research studies looked at by the ovarian cancer researchers. The study pooled the data from the 16 studies and found that the average increase in the risk of ovarian cancer as the result of regular genital talcum powder use by woman went up by 33 percent.
The report did note in its conclusion however that some of the results reported in the study's findings may have been a result of selection bias, which resulted in a false positive. As a result, the study was not able to report definite proof of observational data that supported a link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer. The existence of the 33 percent increase noted is not insignificant, however. The number, though not reliant on a "clear dose-response relationship," still offered insight into the relationship between talcum powder and ovarian cancer that can be pursued by future studies that wish to take data from the 16 combined studies.
The talcum powders lawsuits are comprised of more than 700 lawsuits nationwide that claim Johnson & Johnson failed to warn consumers of the hazardous side effects connected to their Shower-to-Shower and Baby Powder products. Plaintiffs claim that both of these products caused them to develop ovarian cancer, and that Johnson & Johnson did not mention in the product's marketing the possibility for this causal relationship. Attorneys for the plaintiffs have also claimed that Johnson & Johnson may have been aware of the connection between their product and ovarian cancer and decided to market the drug anyways in the interest of protecting profits.
The connection between talcum powder and ovarian cancer was first noted in a British study conducted in 1971. Since then, a number of studies have taken different approaches at determining whether talcum powder increased the risk of ovarian cancer. Many of these studies have comes back with positive results, enough so that lawsuits around the U.S. have sprung up in light of these findings.
More than 100 of the talcum powder lawsuits are filed in New Jersey, where the Johnson & Johnson headquarters are located. Both the plaintiffs and defense have supported multicounty litigation for the talcum lawsuits in the state, though the venue has yet to be established. There are also more than 100 talcum lawsuits currently filed in St. Louis, where some of them are going through the pretrial process as they prepare for litigation set to begin in the coming months.