A Los Angeles jury has awarded a Californian woman $417 million after she alleged that Johnson & Johnson’s Baby Powder led to her ovarian cancer. Several studies have claimed a link between extended use of talc-based products, such as J&J’s Baby Powder, and ovarian cancer, but several other studies have shown mixed results.
Thousands of lawsuits are pending across the U.S., more than 300 of which are in California, have been filed by women who have developed ovarian cancer after decades of using J&J products for feminine hygiene. The first talc lawsuit to be concluded at trial occurred in February 2016, with a jury awarding $72 million to a plaintiff in St. Louis.
Johnson & Johnson’s argues that their talc products are not responsible for the cancers, but most juries that have been presented the evidence have not agreed. Of the $417 million judgment, $347 million was for punitive damages, intended to punish the company for failing to put a warning label on its talc-based products. J&J has known of a potential link between its products and ovarian cancer for decades. The plaintiff in the California case testified that she would have ceased using Baby Powder if a warning label was used.
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