Talcum powder is basically the refined form of talc, a mineral found in nature. Due to the powdery and soft consistency of talc, it makes it useful for absorbing odors and moisture. As a result, talc is the key ingredient in a lot of cosmetic products, foot powders, and baby powders.
While consumers have been using products with talcum powder for quite some time, they have been unknowingly putting themselves and other people at risk of developing some deadly diseases. It is because asbestos was found in many talc products. Unfortunately, some cosmetics, including the popular Johnson & Johnson baby powder, contain asbestos.
Like talc, asbestos is actually a naturally occurring mineral, which was used for many years as a component in insulation materials. Once talc is mined, it may become contaminated with asbestos minerals. Because of this, talc products that are made from the talc deposits containing asbestos are likely to be contaminated with asbestos.
At present, the potential dangerous asbestos in talcum powder has been banned after it was linked to the development of some deadly diseases such as lung cancer, mesothelioma, and asbestosis.
What Are The Health Hazards?
People who were exposed to asbestos are basically at risk of developing deadly asbestos-related illnesses. Too much exposure from asbestos may cause mesothelioma, which is a deadly and rare type of cancer that affects the abdomen’s lining or the lining of your lungs.
In fact, many people have already hired a Mesothelioma Lawyer and filed lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson because they have developed mesothelioma after using talcum powder from this company.
How Asbestos Causes Cancer?
Asbestos can be pulled apart into several flexible fibers. When one swallows or inhales the microscopic fibers of asbestos, their body can’t expel or degrade them. For years, such fibers cause genetic changes and inflammation, which can result in cancer.
Lifestyle factors can also increase your risk of getting cancer after being exposed to asbestos. Such factors include heavy alcohol use, smoking, poor physical fitness, and poor dietary habits.
There are 2 asbestos classifications. Chrysotile fiber’s serpentine class is by far the common kind of asbestos that is used in manufacturing materials that contain asbestos. Chrysotile fibers are flexible and soft, which makes them best for manufacturing products for coatings and insulation. Amphibole fiber group is another asbestos class, which contains subclasses that include actinolite, anthophyllite, transite, amosite, and crocidolite. Overall, all asbestos can be dangerous, regardless of its type.
There are several types of cancer that are associated with asbestos exposure and these include the following:
- Mesothelioma Cancer
It’s the only cancer type that is exclusively caused by too much exposure from asbestos. Around 70 to 75 percent of mesothelioma cancer forms in the lining of the lungs and nearly 20 percent form in the lining of the abdomen. In some rare cases, it develops around the lining of the testes or heart.
Some types of mesothelioma cancer are:
- Peritoneal Mesothelioma – this attacks one’s abdominal area and its neighboring organs. The spleen, kidneys, liver, and stomach are the targets for this kind of mesothelioma cancer.
- Pleural Mesothelioma – It is a type of cancer that affects the respiratory system. It’s the first stop for asbestos fibers that enter the body.
- Pericardial Mesothelioma – Pericardium is referred to as the heart lining, which is a mesothelium kind of membrane. Oftentimes, it is misdiagnosed as a cardiac ailment. This kind of cancer is a bit rare.
The symptoms of mesothelioma cancer may include dizziness, difficulty breathing, fever, bowel irregularities, shortness of breath, and difficulty swallowing.
- Lung Cancer
Lung cancer that is asbestos-related kills twice as many people every year as mesothelioma cancer. 4 percent of all lung cancer cases is can be attributed to asbestos exposure. While the majority of lung cancer cases are linked to smoking cigarettes, the combination of asbestos exposure and smoking increases the risk of having lung cancer.
- Laryngeal Cancer
This type of cancer is linked to excessive alcohol consumption and smoking. But, inhaled asbestos fibers can increase the likelihood of getting it as the inhaled asbestos fibers can lodge in the voice box as they’re passing through the windpipe or trachea on the way to one’s lungs.
Other types of cancer that are associated with asbestos exposure are colon cancer, pharyngeal cancer, and stomach cancer. But, there isn’t strong and enough data to conclude asbestos causes such diseases.
If you have been using talcum powder and you are diagnosed with one of the illnesses associated with asbestos exposure, do not hesitate to contact your doctor immediately or look for professional legal help. You are entitled to compensation and lawyers may help you with the process.