A California jury has found in favor of Johnson & Johnson in the case of a woman who claimed that her consistent exposure to the company’s talcum powder caused her to develop mesothelioma cancer.
Lawyers for plaintiff Carla Allen, from Eureka, California, argued that her exposure to J&J’s asbestos-tainted baby powder was responsible for her cancer diagnosis, but a jury decided that inhalation of the powder was not a “substantial factor” in the development of the disease.
Kim Montagnino, a spokeswoman for J&J, said “the science and facts show” that Allen’s disease “was not caused by her use of our talcum-based products.” She added that “decades of clinical evidence and scientific studies by medical experts around the world support the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder.”
Allen is just one of thousands of plaintiffs who claim the company’s powder has made them sick. Many of the other plaintiffs, however, didn’t develop mesothelioma but, rather, wound up with ovarian cancer allegedly due to the use of talcum powder in their genital area.
Johnson & Johnson has suffered several losses at the hands of various jurors but has also emerged victorious in a number of cases.
Currently, however, J&J is appealing a $4.69 billion award that was granted by a Missouri jury to 22 women who developed ovarian cancer after decades of use of the company’s iconic Baby Powder.
Internal memos and other documents show that the company knew since the 1970s that its talc products contained small amounts of asbestos. Talc, a naturally-occurring mineral that can be found in various parts of the world, is often found alongside asbestos, so when it’s mined for use in various products, contamination can easily happen.
Nonetheless, company attorneys argue that its powder is safe, but J&J still faces approximately 11,000 talc-related suits, reports Bloomberg, many of them class-action suits that are being filed on behalf of multiple plaintiffs.
Individuals who believe that their cancer diagnosis may be as a result of longtime exposure to asbestos-contaminated talc should consult an experienced asbestos attorney to determine their options for receiving compensation for their illness and the associated expenses.