A jury recently awarded a California woman $70 million after she sued Johnson & Johnson, claiming its baby powder caused her ovarian cancer.
The company faces an estimated 2,000 similar pending lawsuits, according to the Associated Press.
Woman: Baby powder caused my cancer
Deborah Giannecchini, who has been living with ovarian cancer since 2012, had used Johnson’s baby powder for feminine hygiene over a period of more than 40 years.
‘It’s been a long-fought battle,’ Giannecchini told NBC News after the verdict. ‘I hope that Johnson & Johnson will step up and take responsibility.’
She wants the company to post a warning on its product, but Johnson & Johnson maintains that science shows its baby powder is safe.
The company plans to appeal the verdict.
The American Cancer Society says the results of studies on the link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer have been mixed. Here’s an excerpt from the organization’s website:
Many studies in women have looked at the possible link between talcum powder and cancer of the ovary. Findings have been mixed, with some studies reporting a slightly increased risk and some reporting no increase. Many case-control studies have found a small increase in risk. But these types of studies can be biased because they often rely on a person’s memory of talc use many years earlier. Two prospective cohort studies, which would not have the same type of potential bias, have not found an increased risk.
While research on a possible link continues, the American Cancer Society says if there is an increased risk, it’s likely to be very small.