Johnson and Johnson loses another talcum powder lawsuit

Jun 2014
51,590
53,404
United States
Most likely, the plaintiffs lawyers put forward proof that X number of women who have had ovarian cancer used talcum powder.

IOW, these two things occured at the same time, to the same women.

But that falls way, way, way short of proving causation.

They didn't have to prove it to a statistician, but to a jury.
 
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johnflesh

Former Staff
Feb 2007
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Weirdo
Most likely, the plaintiffs lawyers put forward proof that X number of women who have had ovarian cancer used talcum powder.

IOW, these two things occured at the same time, to the same women.

But that falls way, way, way short of proving causation.
https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/talcum-powder-and-cancer.html

Studies in people
Ovarian cancer
It has been suggested that talcum powder might cause cancer in the ovaries if the powder particles (applied to the genital area or on sanitary napkins, diaphragms, or condoms) were to travel through the vagina, uterus, and fallopian tubes to the ovary.

Many studies in women have looked at the possible link between talcum powder and cancer of the ovary. Findings have been mixed, with some studies reporting a slightly increased risk and some reporting no increase. Many case-control studies have found a small increase in risk. But these types of studies can be biased because they often rely on a person’s memory of talc use many years earlier. One prospective cohort study, which would not have the same type of potential bias, has not found an increased risk. A second found a modest increase in risk of one type of ovarian cancer.

For any individual woman, if there is an increased risk, the overall increase is likely to very be small. Still, talc is widely used in many products, so it is important to determine if the increased risk is real. Research in this area continues.
After reading this I do not think this is junk science. However, I think it's a bit early to determine if this is exactly the case or not - and in this early stage of lawsuits, I do believe the science is being used incorrectly in court - since it's largely inconclusive and ongoing.
 
Jun 2014
64,781
39,652
Cleveland, Ohio
https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/talcum-powder-and-cancer.html



After reading this I do not think this is junk science. However, I think it's a bit early to determine if this is exactly the case or not - and in this early stage of lawsuits, I do believe the science is being used incorrectly in court - since it's largely inconclusive and ongoing.
There's no proof any talc particulates EVER cross the cervix, move upstream through the reproductive system, lodge in the ovaries and THEN injure cells such that cancer is CAUSED.
 

johnflesh

Former Staff
Feb 2007
28,151
21,055
Weirdo
There's no proof any talc particulates EVER cross the cervix, move upstream through the reproductive system, lodge in the ovaries and THEN injure cells such that cancer is CAUSED.
The research is ongoing. So the caveat to your statement is "to-date" they have found no proof. And yet J&J is being sued for it. And yet the research continues.

If research concludes this to be the case, then the lawsuit is justified.
If not then perhaps J&J can redeem itself somehow.
 
Nov 2006
54,624
20,476
Boy, I remember the days when powder was used for everything!

"A jury in St. Louis awarded $55 million in damages to Gloria Ristesund, who used Johnson & Johnson's talcum powder for more than 35 years before being diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2011. Ristesund's lawyers argued that Johnson & Johnson knew of possible health risks associated with talc, but failed to warn consumers.

"Internal documents from J & J show it knew of studies connecting talc use and ovarian cancer but, to this day, it continues to market it as safe -- neglecting any warning," The Onder Law Firm, which represented Ristesund, said in a statement.

Johnson & Johnson said it plans to appeal the verdict.


Johnson & Johnson just lost another talcum powder cancer lawsuit - May. 3, 2016
And people wonder why pharmaceutical companies have to charge so much for the products they make. I think it's bullshit, the FDA decides what sort of clinical trials and tox studies must be done before your drug (or product in this case) is approved for market. J&J conducts this barrage of studies costing millions as specified by the FDA and then are sued for billions and lose? Why not sue the FDA? They are the ones who approved it. Without proof that J&J intentionally was deceptive in some form or fashion and knew full well their product would cause this sort of thing they should not be held liable. One of the largest factors in just how much your health insurance premium is going to cost is the cost of pharmaceuticals. J&J loses this case and the cost of it's products goes up to cover it and so does the cost to insurance companies. Now every woman who comes down with ovarian cancer will have lawyers asking, 'hey, you ever use talcum powder?"
 
Feb 2010
35,204
25,394
between Moon and NYC
Yes, and no. From what I've read thus far (and admittedly, have not had time to read much), the jury took into consideration the number of Plaintiffs (22) and basically gave them each $25 million for the underlying damages award. For the punitive damages,



Even without an appeal, the punitive damages would be reduced, as statutorily, they are limited to 5 times the net amount of the judgment. (So, roughly $2.75 billion.) As far as the evidentiary basis for it, the jury must have believed that J&J knew of the presence of asbestos and hid/denied it.

Plaintiff's counsel "told the jurors they were the first to see internal company documents revealing knowledge of asbestos in products or failures to warn consumers." J&J stands by its denial of the presence of asbestos.

This, of course, is helping the City of St. Louis regain its reputation as a VERY plaintiff-friendly jurisdiction. (And why I spent the better part of the first half of my career fighting venue motions.)

Madison County, Il. Lawsuit central for plaintiffs across the nation. It really is ridiculous.

Must be something in the water around the St. Louis metro-area...
 
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Feb 2010
35,204
25,394
between Moon and NYC
Yes, and no. From what I've read thus far (and admittedly, have not had time to read much), the jury took into consideration the number of Plaintiffs (22) and basically gave them each $25 million for the underlying damages award. For the punitive damages,



Even without an appeal, the punitive damages would be reduced, as statutorily, they are limited to 5 times the net amount of the judgment. (So, roughly $2.75 billion.) As far as the evidentiary basis for it, the jury must have believed that J&J knew of the presence of asbestos and hid/denied it.

Plaintiff's counsel "told the jurors they were the first to see internal company documents revealing knowledge of asbestos in products or failures to warn consumers." J&J stands by its denial of the presence of asbestos.

This, of course, is helping the City of St. Louis regain its reputation as a VERY plaintiff-friendly jurisdiction. (And why I spent the better part of the first half of my career fighting venue motions.)
From what I am reading, J&J has been in situation several times. And it looks like they have successfully gotten all verdicts reversed.
 
Jul 2014
38,922
33,912
Border Fence
Seems they knew inhaling it was dangerous as was the asbestos. As for the rest of it, it seems as though the decisions are erring on the side of caution. Difficult to say exactly what caused someones particular cancer especially when we know both environment and heredity play factors. I think the big fears these days (and the internet "scientists" don't help) is they are fearful of another PCB, asbestos, Agent Orange, DDT type scenario where the companies swore for decades they were safe, until they weren't.
I do not want to get explicit but I understand lots of that powder got/went up the vajayjay.
 

Wonderer

Moderator
May 2014
29,720
20,202
Missouri
Madison County, Il. Lawsuit central for plaintiffs across the nation. It really is ridiculous.

Must be something in the water around the St. Louis metro-area...
Trying a case in “MadCow” in September.