Asbestos in Baby Powder Fears Prompt a New Johnson & Johnson Investigation
Concerns that Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder is contaminated with asbestos have resulted in thousands of lawsuits. Now the big pharma company is being investigated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission over the safety of the popular product.
An article in Business Insider questioned whether J&J knew about the potential dangers of its talc. The key questions facing Johnson & Jonson over contaminated talc are:
- Did J&J know its talc was contaminated with asbestos when it sold the product?
- If the product contained asbestos how much did it contain?
- Did the talc contain enough asbestos to cause cancer?
Talcum powder manufactured by J&J is linked to two types of cancer – ovarian cancer and mesothelioma, which typically occurs in the lungs. Most of the cases brought against the company claim talc caused ovarian cancer.
These are serious forms of cancer. Mesothelioma is typically deadly. Ovarian cancer often claims the life of the sufferer.
Imerys Talc America, the company that supplies talc to Johnson & Johnson, filed for bankruptcy protection in February. The company recently settled a lawsuit for an undisclosed sum and has cited more than 14,000 claims it faces in U.S. courts.
Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code would allow the company to set up a trust to deal with the talc cases and future claims. Our Virginia talc injury lawyers are concerned it would allow cases to be heard under a single judge and Imerys could pressurize victims to accept lower claims.
Last year, Imerys settled a case with Carolyn Weirick after a mistrial. Weirick used talc almost every day. She claimed the company knew its talc was contaminated with asbestos. She claimed the talc led to her incurable mesothelioma.
Imerys has provided the talc used by J&J in its Baby Powder and other products for many years. Legal action put J&J’s Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower talc products under increased scrutiny.
Last year, a Missouri jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $4.69 billion to 22 women who claimed talc caused their ovarian cancers. That verdict was the sixth-largest defective products result in U.S. history.
Weirick’s lawsuit in California blamed both companies for causing mesothelioma with talc contaminated with asbestos. Media reports suggested Weirick received at least $5 million.
Jurors in New Jersey hit Imerys with a $117 million verdict over claims asbestos-laced talc caused mesothelioma. The jury held the mining company 30 percent responsible.
Did Johnson & Johnson Know Talc is Contaminated with Asbestos Fibers?
In late 2018, Reuters News Service published a report stating Johnson & Johnson knew for decades that its Baby Powder was contaminated with asbestos fibers but failed to inform regulators or to warn the public.
Reuters provided details of internal documents, extensive conversations, and company memos relating to the dangers. The company’s shares dropped following publication of the report, Asbestos.com reported.
We are extremely concerned to hear another big company is riding roughshod over public safety. Big pharma routinely puts profits above the safety of the people who use its products.
What is Mesothelioma Linked to Talc?
Mesothelioma is cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs or abdomen. It is linked to exposure to asbestos. There is no known cure for this cancer.
In 1976, the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association (now the Personal Care Products Council) asked its members and the cosmetic industry to use asbestos-free talc.
Regulations in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938 never required testing or review cosmetic products or their ingredients.
The fact industry groups raised red flags over asbestos and talc almost 50 years ago means Imerys and J&J should have been aware of the dangers of talc at that time.
We are alarmed about the notion of talc being contaminated with cancer-causing asbestos. More and more innocent victims who used this product with no idea of the potential dangers are coming forward.
Our experienced Virginia talc lawsuit attorneys assist people who suffered from the use of this seemingly harmless product. Both ovarian cancer and mesothelioma are terrible forms of cancer that often prove deadly.
If you believe your cancer was linked to talcum powder, it’s important to act now and talk to an injury attorney. Please call Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers at (757) 231-6443.