An Illinois woman who was allegedly diagnosed with ovarian cancer following years of genital talcum powder use is pursuing a lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson, the company behind Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower. According to a complaint filed in St. Clair County Circuit Court, the plaintiff has accused Johnson & Johnson of negligence for allegedly failing to warn consumers of the potential link between talc and ovarian cancer.
The lawsuit also names Imerys Talc America Inc., the supplier of talc for Johnson & Johnson’s products, as well as retailer Walgreens Co., as defendants.
Like other suits of this nature, this complaint asserts that the plaintiff’s ovarian cancer diagnosis was a direct and proximate result of using Johnson & Johnson’s talc-based products as a regular part of her feminine hygiene routine. In addition to faulting defendants for a lack of appropriate warnings, she claims that they wrongly advertised and marketed talc as safe for human use, and failed to properly test their products.
Court records indicate that Johnson & Johnson is facing more than 1,800 similar talcum powder lawsuits in courts throughout the U.S. Two cases have already gone to trial in a centralized litigation currently underway in Missouri state court, both of which ended with multimillion verdicts on behalf of plaintiffs. That proceeding’s third trial is now underway. During all three trials, plaintiffs highlighted internal company documents that suggested Johnson & Johnson was aware of the potential link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer as early as the 1970s.
About 200 cases involving ovarian cancer and Johnson & Johnson talcum powders have been centralized in New Jersey Superior Court. And earlier this month, all such federal claims involving the company’s talc-based powders were consolidated in a multidistrict litigation and transferred to the U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey.