Multiple baby powder cancer lawsuits have resulted in massive awards from juries for women and their families, alleging that their ovarian cancer or mesothelioma was caused by the regular use of talcum powder products for personal hygiene. The company is currently battling more than 9,000 baby powder cancer lawsuits in across the country over the question of whether talc-based products like Shower-to-Shower and Johnson’s Baby Powder cause cancer. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins discusses this with Scott Hardy from Top Class Actions.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Farron Cousins:                  By now, I’m sure everybody’s heard about the fact that Johnson and Johnson, the maker of, you know, popular Johnson and Johnson’s baby powder and shower to shower body powder, had been losing a lot of court cases due to the fact that it has been proven in court that some of these powders are linked to cancers, specifically ovarian cancer in women. But what some people may not understand is that there’s actually two different issues that we’re dealing with right now with these talcum powder investigations. One is the fact that the talc itself might be causing cancer in these women and the other is that some of this talc is actually contaminated with asbestos.

One product, two major issues, and joining me now to talk about this is Scott Hardy with Top Class Actions. So Scott, this is a, a very interesting one. We’ve covered it on Ring of Fire plenty of times and there really, what’s interesting to me is that there are two issues. I mean you do have the talc itself that is being found inside tumors that they’re taking out of women and then you have the talc that’s also contaminated with asbestos, and that can cause mesothelioma. So all around, basically we’re looking at this product, no matter how you slice it seems exceptionally dangerous for such a common use, commonly used product, right?

Scott Hardy:                          Yeah, it’s true. It’s shocking. You know, doctors have been recommending people to use talc. They want to freshen up for literally generations now, you know, and now we’re finding out over the past number of years as you said, that there’s a link to ovarian cancer. Now we’re also finding that there’s a link to mesothelioma. You had women that were using talc for 30 plus years on their, on their feminine region, and then all of a sudden they’re diagnosed with mesothelioma. Well, there’s a huge, you know, the vast, vast majority of those diagnosed with mesothelioma are men because they were working in the ship yards when they’re tearing off asbestos from, you know, old ships and destroyers and they’re cleaning asbestos out of buildings.

They’re wondering how are women getting diagnosis with mesothelioma? Well, then they connected it to talc. They went, whoa, there’s actually talc in, I’m sorry, there’s asbestos in talcum powder and that’s the link. So you have women that are, are, are just getting it on both sides now of getting mesothelioma and getting ovarian cancer and you have that link as you stated, that has been proven in court. We have a number of cases that have already been proven.

I just had a submission from a gentleman who said, my wife just died of ovarian cancer. She used talc, she didn’t want to pursue the lawsuit while she was living. Can I do that right now, now that she’s passed away because she just wanted to live her life? She didn’t want to do the lawsuit. Of course they, thankfully, the answer is yes. If your loved one passed away in the past couple of years due to ovarian cancer or mesothelioma and they used talcum powder, please reach out to the attorneys that we work with here to follow up on your case.

You know, the thing is that the attorneys will make this as easy on the family as possible. They will talk to the hospitals. They will talk to the doctors. That’s not the responsibility necessarily of the patient or the survivor of that victim of, of these cancers. The attorneys try to take that weight off. So, you know, you can be informed of how these cases are proceeding, but, you know, they know that you have enough to deal with. So if this happened to a loved one and they’ve already passed away, you can still file a case with, as long as it happened within the past few years. You’ll just want to talk to a lawyer to confirm that.

Farron Cousins:                  And again, a lot of losses so far for Johnson and Johnson, I mean, I think, I think they’ve lost every case so far. Maybe I’m wrong, maybe they won one out of five, but I think they actually lost all of them. And these are huge, huge sums of money that Johnson and Johnson has been ordered to pay out. And they still have more than 9,000 lawsuits pending against them over this ovarian cancer talcum powder link. So, so this company is in pretty bad shape at the moment. I mean, almost 10,000 lawsuits waiting when they’ve got a very horrendous losing record. And part of it has to do, I mean, part of it, all of it really has to do with the fact that the company’s own documents are telling a story that Johnson and Johnson really never wanted to be told.

Scott Hardy:                          Exactly, that’s the thing is when you have these court cases come out, you have that discovery process and there are reams upon reams of data that get released where you have these large corporations that have to admit, you know, oh, well maybe we did find this out during our research 20 years ago that this could be hazardous to people. But we didn’t share it because we wanted to of course, sell the product and make billions of dollars in the process. Well now, you know, unfortunately you have families all over the world that have used these products thinking it was safe and, you know, they, they’ve paid the price, they’ve paid the mortal price of dying because they were using a product they thought was safe.

You know, I used to live in Arizona, it’s hot. I had a doctor who said, hey, you feel like you’re sweating. Just go ahead and put the talcum powder all on your chest. You’ll stay fresh, you’ll be fine. Of course I’m inhaling that. I’ve got asthma. So that’s bad in and of itself. But I had no idea. My doctor had no idea that I could get mesothelioma just by inhaling that powder by using it on a regular basis. But now that’s all come out. And if you have those medical problems, please talk to a lawyer and see what your options are.

Farron Cousins:                  You know, and the other part too, one of the big products we’re finding this in is the baby powder. So, you know, people are out there just sprinkling this on, on their infants, on their newborns. You know, these people, you know, babies with lungs that are still really kind of developing and they’re breathing this stuff in too. And that’s why, you know, one of the reasons this is so dangerous and we’re going to find out a lot more because Johnson and Johnson at the moment does not appear ready to settle these cases. So they’re going to keep fighting it in court. And the more they fight it in court, the more the documents come out, the more the public can learn about the deception from this company.

I mean, really anybody watching this, do me a favor, please go read some of the documents that have been released that are publicly available. You will absolutely be shocked at the conduct of this company. And more importantly, keep in mind this is typically the kind of stuff that comes out in these lawsuits, not just against Johnson and Johnson, but you know, against, against DuPont, against the major pharmaceutical companies, against the oil companies. This is the kind of information that lawyers have to go through and sift through and present in court every single day and each company out there that they’re taking on, the conduct is just as bad as the company before it.

For more information about this issue, please follow the link in the description of this video, head over to Top Class Actions and while you’re there, make sure you sign up for their weekly newsletter. Scott Hardy with Top Class Actions. Thank you very much for talking with me today.

Scott Hardy:                          You’re welcome. Thanks for your time, Farron.

Farron Cousins is the executive editor of The Trial Lawyer magazine and a contributing writer at He is the co-host / guest host for Ring of Fire Radio. His writings have appeared on Alternet, Truthout, and The Huffington Post. Farron received his bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of West Florida in 2005 and became a member of American MENSA in 2009. Follow him on Twitter @farronbalanced