Talcum powder was marketed to Black women raising their risk for ovarian cancer, says a recent study by former skeptic, reports Joe Osborne talcum powder lawyer
Regular use of the powder by African-American women is associated with a greater chance of suffering ovarian cancer regardless of where the women used it, according to a study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention in May, reports talcum powder lawyer Joe Osborne. Those who used it in their genital area had more than a 40% increased risk of ovarian cancer. Those who used it elsewhere had an increased risk of more than 30%.
Principal investigator Joellen Schildkraut told Reuters Health that African-American women have been the target of marketing for use of body powder and are more likely to use it. Schildkraut is an epidemiologist at the University of Virginia and had been a self-described skeptic of a connection between genital talc use and ovarian cancer but has since changed her mind. The new study along with other research has convinced her to advise women not to use talcum powder.
“As you look across all these studies, I would say, why use it? It’s an avoidable risk for ovarian cancer,” Schildkraut told Reuters. About 20,000 American women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer, about 14,500 dying from it each year, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Researchers talked to 584 black women with ovarian cancer and 745 black women without it. Nearly 63% of those with the cancer and nearly 53% percent of the healthy control group dusted themselves with talcum powder.
Dr. Nicolas Wentzensen, head of clinical epidemiology for the National Cancer Institute, told Reuters African-American women are often underrepresented in epidemiological studies and this one is well-conducted and confirms previous studies documenting a higher risk of ovarian cancer from talc use.
· The study discovered stronger associations between ovarian cancer and talc use and than previous research.
· A December paper published in the journal Epidemiology found a 33% higher risk of ovarian cancer in women who said they routinely applied talc to their crotches, sanitary napkins, tampon and underwear.
African-American women are reported to have much higher use of feminine hygiene products, including genital powder.
· A study in Los Angeles in 2015 found 44% of African-American women stated they used talcum powder, compared to 30% of white women and 29% of Hispanic women.
· This may be the result of marketing efforts in the 1990’s by a major baby powder manufacturer which outlined a plan to hike sales of its powder “by targeting” black and Hispanic women.
That information is part of a company memo published after they were part of lawsuits leading to recent multi-million-dollar verdicts against the powder manufacturer.
This most recently study adds to the evidence of the dangers of talcum powder use.
· Dr. Daniel W. Cramer, the head of the Obstetrics and Gynecology Epidemiology Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, first reported a connection between genital talc use and ovarian cancer in 1982. Since then he’s called for warning labels.
· Gynecologic Oncology recently published an editorial by cancer genetics expert Dr. Steven Narod of Women’s College Research Institute in Toronto who wrote, “In the interests of public health, I believe we should caution women against using genital talcum powder…(it’s) disingenuous to state that there is no evidence that talc is associated with ovarian cancer.”