We’ve used it. You’ve used it. Most probably, most people you know have used it. But will you now?
In an historic case, Johnson & Johnson have been ordered by a Missouri court to pay $72 million in damages to the family of a woman (Jackie Fox) who had used talc based baby powder and ‘Shower to Shower’ for several decades. The woman who lived in Birmingham, Alabama claimed she used the products for over 35 years and was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2013, she died in October 2015 aged 62. The suit was part of a larger claim by 60 people in the St Louis area.
Jurors found Johnson & Johnson liable for fraud, negligence and conspiracy, according to the family’s lawyers. During the three week trial, Fox’s attorneys introduced into evidence a memo from 1997 from a Johnson & Johnson medical consultant suggesting that ‘anybody who denies the risks between “hygienic” talc use and ovarian cancer would be publicly perceived in the same light as those who denied a link between smoking cigarettes and cancer.. Denying the obvious in the face of all evidence to the contrary.’
Carol Goodrich, a Johnson & Johnson spokeswoman, said: “We have no higher responsibility than the health and safety of consumers, and we are disappointed with the outcome of the trial. We sympathize with the plaintiff’s family but firmly believe the safety of cosmetic talc is supported by decades of scientific evidence.”
The statistics like most cancers are shocking. In 2016, an estimated 21,290 women in the United States will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer. An estimated 14,180 deaths from this disease will occur this year alone. It is the fifth most common cause of cancer-related death in women. Around 1 in 100 women are affected.
Like all cancers and disease, getting regularly checked is paramount.