Jury awards $29M in J&J baby powder cancer case

US Johnson & Johnson asked to pay $29 million to cancer patient who used its talcum powder

"We are disappointed with today's verdict and will pursue an appeal because Johnson's Baby Powder does not contain asbestos or cause cancer", the statement says.

In 11 cases so far alleging asbestos contamination in talc, three have resulted in wins for plaintiffs, awarding damages as high as $4.69 billion in a July 2018 multi-plaintiff ovarian cancer verdict.

The ruling sets an obvious precedent for the pharma and consumer goods giant as it faces thousands of lawsuits from other plaintiffs for similar reasons.

A Superior Court jury in Oakland, California on Thursday (NZ time) found the world's largest health care company mainly liable for Teresa Leavitt's mesothelioma.

A California jury on Wednesday awarded $29 million to a woman who said that asbestos in Johnson & Johnson's talcum-powder-based products caused her cancer.

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The lawsuit was brought by Terry Leavitt, who said she used Johnson's Baby Powder and Shower to Shower - another powder containing talc sold in the past - in the 1960s and 1970s and was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2017. In December a year ago, the company reiterated the safety of its products as a slew of drug regulators around the world such as the US FDA and India's Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) analysed samples of J&J products. Decades of tests by independent, non-litigation driven experts and institutions repeatedly confirm that Johnson's Baby Powder does not contain asbestos or cause cancer.

There were serious procedural and evidentiary errors in the proceeding that required us to move for mistrial on eight different points during the proceeding.

Her lawyers noted that internal J&J documents indicated officials knew since the 1970s baby powder mined in places such as Vermont and Italy contained trace amounts of asbestos, but failed to alert consumers or regulators.

Amid the scrutiny, Reuters late past year published a report alleging that J&J knew about asbestos in its talc for decades.

Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano on the fallout from a report that Johnson & Johnson's Baby Powder contained asbestos and the company was aware of it for decades. The company is now embroiled in roughly 13,000 lawsuits brought by people who claim the company's products caused or contributed to serious health issues, the AP reports. Before that, in 2016, the company was ordered to pay $55 million to a woman who claimed she got cancer from its talcum powder.

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