Talcum Powder Ovarian Cancer: Frequently Asked Questions

What is Talc?

Hydrous magnesium silicate, also known as talc, is the softest mineral, and is used in certain drugs, cosmetics and industrial applications. After it was found that some talc contained asbestos (the two minerals are often found next to one another), it was mandated in the 70’s that all talc would be asbestos free. Talc is used in cosmetics and personal care products, due to its absorbent, anti-caking properties.

What are the Dangers and Risks of Talc?

Some of the studies done on the potential dangers and risks of using talcum powder in the genital region have found a link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer. Many of these studies found that the longer talcum powder is used for feminine hygiene, the higher the risk. Some studies found that using talcum powder in the genital region increased the risk of ovarian cancer and when women also used talcum powder on sanitary napkins, the risk increased even more. Johnson & Johnson also sells baby powders which contain cornstarch rather than talcum powder, but have continued to sell baby powder and Shower to Shower with talc. Johnson & Johnson claims there is no causal relationship between talc and ovarian cancer, therefore there is no reason to warn consumers. 

What Cancers Have Been Associated with Talc?

In addition to the potential relationship between talcum powder and ovarian cancer, there is a theoretical risk of cancer to other female organs, including the fallopian tubes. In theory, the talc particles can travel up through the vagina and fallopian tubes, into the ovaries, therefore other female reproductive organs could also be at risk. 

What is the FDA’s Stance on Talc?

The Food and Drug Administration has determined that talc is generally recognized as safe for use as an anti-caking agent in foods and vanilla powder. The FDA has listed talc as a color additive used in coloring drug products. Talc is approved by the FDA for in ingested and topical drug products, however the FDA is quick to point out that the agency does not control cosmetics or personal items such as baby powder. 

How Do I Know if My Ovarian Cancer Was Caused by Talc?

While your doctor is likely more focused on your ovarian cancer treatment as opposed to looking for its cause, the tissue samples and pathology reports used to diagnose your cancer could also be examined to determine whether the tissues contain talc fibers. Talc fibers may be found in the ovaries as well as the fallopian tubes for years after they enter the reproductive system. Talc fibers may cause inflammation in the ovaries, as they can take years to disintegrate. This inflammation could result in a higher rate of ovarian cancer. 

Who is Most at Risk of Developing Ovarian Talcum Powder Cancer?

Those women who used talcum powder regularly for feminine hygiene for a lengthy period of time are probably the most likely to develop ovarian cancer related to talc. Researchers believe the harm is cumulative, and may remain latent for many years. Some studies place the increased risk of ovarian cancer among women who have used talcum powder every week for an extended period of time at 33 percent. For those who have used talcum powder on a daily basis for an extended period of time, the risk—according to some studies—is roughly a 41 percent increase. 

How Much Time Do I Have to File an Ovarian Talcum Powder Cancer Lawsuit?

All states have statutes of limitations, which are time limits for filing defective product or dangerous drug lawsuits. For most states, that time limit is two years from the time the injury occurs. The majority of women who have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer will fall within their statute of limitations so long as they contact an ovarian talcum powder cancer attorney as soon as possible after their diagnosis. To receive more information regarding your specific time limit for filing your talcum powder ovarian cancer lawsuit, it is important that you speak with a knowledgeable ovarian talcum powder cancer attorney. 

How Will I Know if I Have a Valid Ovarian Talcum Powder Cancer Claim?

If you believe your ovarian cancer was a result of the use of talcum powder for feminine hygiene, it is important to set up a meeting with an experienced attorney. Your attorney will understand the medical aspect of your case, particularly your diagnosis and treatment. He or she will be able to thoroughly examine the facts related to your ovarian cancer diagnosis and determine whether your illness is the result of a defective product, namely talcum powder. If it is determined talcum powder could have been responsible for your ovarian cancer, our law firm will do our best to hold the manufacturer responsible, on your behalf. 

How Can an Ovarian Talcum Powder Cancer Lawyer Help Me?

If you have received a diagnosis of ovarian cancer, your attorney understands that you and your family have been devastated by the news, and that you need an advocate in your corner who will handle all the legal aspects, allowing you the time to work on treating your cancer. Having an experienced ovarian talcum powder cancer attorney by your side can be beneficial.
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