The plaintiff, Lynne Cebulske, filed her lawsuit in St. Clair County Circuit Court. She says she started using Johnson’s Baby Powder and Shower-to-Shower as a form of feminine hygiene in 1992. In March 2012, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
Cebulske alleges that Johnson & Johnson knew or should have known about the cancer risks of talcum powder, but failed to place proper warning labels on their products. She says she never would have used the products had she known about the risk.
Researchers have been warning since the 1970s that women who use talcum powder in the genital area may be at greater risk of ovarian cancer. In June 2013, a study published by the journal Cancer Prevention Research found a 20-30% increased risk of ovarian cancer for women who use genital talc powder. In October 2013, a jury in South Dakota ruled that there was sufficient evidence linking Shower-to-Shower and ovarian cancer.
Last month, a class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, seeking reimbursement for everyone in Illinois who purchased Johnson’s Baby Powder. According to the complaint, Johnson & Johnson ignored the potentially catastrophic health consequences and decided not to tell consumers about the risk of ovarian cancer. Instead, they advertised the products toward women, anytime they want their “skin to feel soft, fresh, and comfortable.”
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