Court award £58m to woman who claimed that Johnson’s baby powder gave her cancer

A woman has been awarded more than $70m (£58m) after alleging that using Johnson’s baby powder caused her cancer. Deborah Giannecchini of Modesto, California, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012.

She accused talc makers Johnson & Johnson of “negligent conduct” in making and marketing the product.
The woman’s lawyer Jim Onder said: “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.”

The case is the latest which has raised concerns about the health ramifications of extended use of talcum powder.

Some research has found no link or a weak one between ovarian cancer and baby powder and the company has insisted it is safe.

But other research has indicated that women who regularly use talc on their genital area face up to a 40% higher risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Factors known to increase the risk include age, obesity, oestrogen therapy after the menopause, not having children and family history.

Talc is a soft mineral mined from deposits around the world and is crushed into a white powder.

It has been widely used in cosmetics and other personal care products to absorb moisture since at least 1894, when Johnson & Johnson launched its baby powder.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies genital use of talc as “possibly carcinogenic”.
After the verdict, Johnson & Johnson said in a statement: “We will appeal today’s verdict because we are guided by the science, which supports the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder.”
Earlier this year, two other lawsuits in St. Louis ended in jury verdicts worth a combined $127m (£104m).
But two others in New Jersey were thrown out by a judge who said there wasn’t reliable evidence that talc leads to ovarian cancer.
According to a report on Sky News, about 2,000 women have filed similar law suits and lawyers are reviewing thousands of other potential cases.
Johnson & Johnson has been targeted before by health and consumer groups over ingredients in its products, including Johnson’s No More Tears baby shampoo.


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