Johnson & Johnson struck with biggest trial as talc-based products caused cancer

Medical - Mohit Shah - Jun 12,2018

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johnson and johnson struck with biggest trial as talc based products caused cancer

A lawsuit filed against Johnson & Johnson by 22 ovarian cancer patients went on trial in Missouri state court on Wednesday; the trial is likely to last until mid-July. 

The complaints issued by 22 ovarian cancer patients have put Johnson & Johnson under a shaky platform. On Wednesday, the trial was initiated in Missouri state court, making it the largest case faced by the company over active allegations that the talc-based products contain cancer-causing asbestos.

The women and their families allege Johnson & Johnson knew that its talc was polluted with asbestos probably since the 1970s; however, failed to caution consumers regarding its risks.

As a response, J&J has denied both allegations which include, talc products offered by the company instigated cancer and also that they delivered contained asbestos.

Currently, J&J is combatting some 9,000 cases issued by users of its Shower to Shower and Baby Powder products. Among these, the major count of the lawsuits states that talc triggered ovarian cancer in women who preferred it for feminine hygiene. Also, a smaller number of cases claim talc polluted by asbestos during the mining process led to mesothelioma, a type of tissue cancer closely associated with asbestos exposure.

Peter Bicks, J&J lawyer informed the jury on Wednesday that the reasons for ovarian cancer are in most cases unknown. He further added, gene mutations, as well as family history of cancer, does play a vital role; and asbestos was not acknowledged to initiate ovarian cancer.

Bicks added to his statement that testing managed by independent laboratories, government agencies, talc suppliers, universities and J&J itself has highlighted that the presence of asbestos is nowhere to be found in the company's talc.

Things might get difficult for J&J, since the company has lost two jury trials associated to talc mesothelioma in the past weeks. Presently, those cases are under appeal.