Johnson & Johnson Recalls Baby Powder For Asbestos
Check your baby powder. Johnson & Johnson is recalling it's powder "out of an abundance of caution" after asbestos was discovered.
A U.S. Food and Drug Administration test found "sub-trace levels of chrysotile asbestos contamination." It came from samples out a single bottle purchased from an online retailer.
Johnson & Johnson voluntarily recalled Lot #22318RB of Johnson’s Baby Powder, from which the tested sample was taken.
The FDA is working with Johnson & Johnson to "determine the integrity of the tested sample, and the validity of the test results." The findings so far...
• Cannot confirm if cross-contamination of the sample caused a false positive.
• Cannot confirm whether the sample was taken from a bottle with an intact seal or whether the sample was prepared in a controlled environment.
• Cannot confirm whether the tested product is authentic or counterfeit.
"Thousands of tests over the past 40 years repeatedly confirm our consumer talc products do not contain asbestos," the company said in a press release. "Our talc comes from ore sources confirmed to meet our stringent specifications that exceed industry standards."
There have been several lawsuits involving the talc powder including the 2018 case where a Missouri jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $4.7 billion to 22 women who claimed the talc caused ovarian cancer. The company is appealing the decision according to Consumer Safety. More than 15,000 lawsuits are currently pending.
Medical journals have published numerous studies over the last 5 decades on a link between talc and ovarian cancer. In 2017, the European Journal of Cancer Prevention discovered a “weak but statistically significant association between genital use of talc and ovarian cancer”
A 2018 study Epidemiology reported “a consistent association between perineal talc use and ovarian cancer,” with some variation based on the type of study and ovarian cancer subtype.
In late 2018, Reuters published an expose that showed internal documents proved J&J was aware of asbestos contamination in their talcum powder as early as the 1950s.
The American Cancer Society says findings have been mixed on the link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer. "If there is an 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."
Talcum powder is made from talc, a mineral made up mainly of magnesium, silicon, and oxygen. It is widely used in cosmetic products. In its natural form, some talc contains asbestos, a substance known to cause cancers in and around the lungs when inhaled, according to the American Cancer Society.