Johnson & Johnson hit with second multi-million dollar damages payment
A jury in St. Louis, Missouri, has ordered cosmetics manufacturer Johnson & Johnson to pay $55m to a cancer survivor
4 May 2016 | 0
In an judgement that sounds more like something out of a John Grisham novel than an actual news story, cosmetics giant Johnson & Johnson has been ordered to pay $55m to a South Dakota woman who beat ovarian cancer, in the second case that found talcum powder is a cause.
In February, another St. Louis jury awarded $72m to the family of an Alabama woman who died from ovarian cancer. The two cases are among hundreds before the courts claiming that regularly applying certain products can cause cancer.
Research into the connection between talcum powder and ovarian cancer goes back to the 1970s, with some case studies indicating women who regularly apply talcum powder to their genital area face up to a 40% higher risk of developing the disease. Other studies, however, reveal no such link, leaving conclusions disputed.
“This jury’s decision goes against 30 years of studies by medical experts around the world,” said J&J spokesperson Carol Goodrich in a statement, “that continue to support the safety of cosmetic talc.”
The two judgements in St. Louis were the first cases in which damages were awarded, although another South Dakota woman won a case in 2013 in which no damages were awarded.