Talcum Powder Lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson continue to grow. Now J&J faces lawsuits in Canada filed by ovarian cancer victims.
North Little Rock, AR, June 07, 2016 — Johnson & Johnson’s legal problems continue to mount as the pharmaceutical giant defends itself in court against suits all over the nation. Those lawsuits have now become international-a class action suit has been filed by Canadian ovarian cancer victims who claim that Johnson & Johnson’s talc baby powder caused their condition.
“I feel like I have been betrayed by an old friend. I trusted the product and was devastated to learn that it caused my ovarian cancer,” said Shaeda Farooqi, one of the survivors, “It feels like being in the deep end of the pool and having someone let go of my hand.” http://finance.yahoo.com/news/class-action-alleges-between-johnson-113000869.html
The sentiment is shared by many women who have been shocked to realize that a product marketed for infant and adult use could have devastating effects when used frequently for an extended period of time. Although Johnson & Johnson continues to deny that there is a connection between its talcum powder and ovarian cancer, researchers have determined that perineal use of talc over many years can increase the risk of developing ovarian cancer by 33%.
The Canadian class action lawsuit alleges, in part, that Johnson & Johnson was aware of the potential side effects and knowingly “failed to disclose these defects and the resulting risks to the health and life of the plaintiffs.” http://business.financialpost.com/legal-post/canadian-class-action-claims-johnson-johnsons-baby-powder-failed-to-warn-of-cancer-risk Indeed, Johnson & Johnson’s failure to warn was the basis of the verdict in the 2013 federal case, Berg v. Johnson & Johnson, the first major defeat in the growing judicial war on talc. The jury in South Dakota did not assign money damages to the plaintiff, but it did find Johnson & Johnson negligent for failing to warn of the hidden dangers that come from long-term talc use. Three years later, juries in St. Louis were less understanding—they ordered the company pay $72 and $55 million in two cases over a three week span. At the root of those determinations was the unsettling fact that Johnson & Johnson was aware of the risks and elected not to provide any warning.
Johnson & Johnson’s refusal to warn its consumers appears to stem from stubbornness rather than business acumen. According to Bloomberg.com, talcum products made the company $374 million in 2014. http://www.bloomberg.com/features/2016-baby-powder-cancer-lawsuits That figure, although no inconsequential, represents just one half of one percent of Johnson & Johnson’s net worth. The company has been selling talcum baby powder since 1894. Clearly the value of talc to Johnson & Johnson runs deeper than dollars and cents, but the cost of sentimentality should not be ovarian cancer.
“The talc in our baby powder has a long history of safe and gentle use, “Johnson & Johnson Canada said in a statement, “. . . We continue to believe in the safety of Johnson’s baby powder containing talc.” The company is welcome to believe whatever it wishes, but three juries in the United States have already found Johnson & Johnson’s belief to be willful ignorance. Canadian juries might be next.
Law Offices of Lisa Douglas
North Little Rock, AR 72114
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