Researchers Report on the Dangers of Talc
When you think of a potentially life-endangering substance, baby powder is probably the last thing that crosses your mind. However, recent reports are shedding light on a potential risk that researchers say is inherent to a main ingredient in the seemingly harmless substance. According to a recent study published in the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, talc, which is commonly used in baby powder and cosmetics, may include dangerous levels of asbestos.
Asbestos is a mineral found within specific rock formations and soils. During the 20th century, it was used in a variety of consumer products. Unfortunately, the dangers of asbestos were not fully understood until after its widespread usage. It was eventually linked to a particularly dangerous type of lung cancer, called mesothelioma. Through out the 70s and 80s, the mineral was banned from usage in many products. Asbestos is naturally found inside of talc and researchers assert that it is making its way into consumer products that were not part of the government bans.
As reported by the federal government, some of these products include:
- Surgical gloves;
- Pills and capsules;
- Eye-shadows; and
- Body and bay powders.
Tracking the Contamination
According to a report by the San Antonio Express News, a group of scientists recently spent a year tracking asbestos contaminated talc, starting with its removal from mines to its inclusion in a body-powder consumer product. They are reportedly connecting the contamination with the death of a woman who used the product for years and developed mesothelioma.
Ronald Gordon is one of the study’s authors. He is quoted in the article as stating, “Of course we knew that there was asbestos contaminating the talc in many cosmetic powders, but who would have ever thought that that’s the way these women were being exposed?” He continued, “We have traced the asbestos in the talc to the mines from which it originated, into the milled grades, into the product, and finally into the lung and lymph nodes of the users of those products, including one woman who developed mesothelioma.”
As stated in the article, cosmetics and their ingredients are not subject to Federal Drug Administration (FDA) review or approval before they are offered to consumers on the open market. Instead, manufacturers are trusted to ensure their safety and label them properly. However, it is highly debatable that hiding the presence of asbestos falls short of proper labeling. According to reports, though the FDA is aware of the contamination and possible dangers, it is not currently investigating the issue. When injuries do occur, victims are left with extensive medical and financial costs. With the assistance of an experienced lawyer, the responsible manufacturer may be held liable and forced to take responsibility.
If you or your child has been injured by a consumer product, contact the Miami legal team of Pita Weber & Del Prado for knowledgeable and skillful representation. Call the office today at 305-670-2889 for a free consultation.