For many years mothers across the country used talcum powder, often described as baby powder, to keep their infants free from diaper rash. This inexpensive, readily available mineral, was easy to use and highly effective. It fell out of favor as a diaper rash prevention when it was discovered that babies may inhale the particles and develop lung problems. However, that did not prevent millions of women using the powder in order to reduce chafing and discomfort on themselves. Recently studies have shown that women using talcum powder around their perineal region are at an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer. |
What is Talcum Powder?
Talcum powder is the finely crushed particles of the mineral talc. This mineral is found on nearly every continent on the planet, and used in a wide variety of ways. Most commonly it is turned into powder that is valued for its astringent qualities, and its ability to lubricate. Talcum is used in everything from cosmetics, to tire manufacturing, to the powdery coating inside some rubber gloves.
How Does Talcum Powder Lead to Ovarian Cancer?
The powder in itself is mostly harmless. It is not a known carcinogen, it will not poison an individual, and it can’t cause sickness. However, for women who have used the powder daily for personal hygiene, many have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The idea is that using the powder, either by sprinkling it directly to the genital area or by applying it to sanitary pads and napkins, particles enter into the vagina, travel up the fallopian tubes, and become lodged in the ovaries. When any foreign substance becomes lodged in the body, the natural reaction is swelling and irritation until the foreign particle is removed. Much like when a sliver gets stuck in the finger, the body pushes away the foreign object. In the ovaries, however, there is nowhere for the particle to go. This irritated and inflamed area becomes an ideal place for cancer to grow and spread.
What to do If You Have Used Talcum Powder
A few uses of talcum powder here and there are unlikely to hurt you. However, women who have habitually used the powder for years on end are at an increased risk of developing this cancer. If you have used talcum powder, and you suffer from ovarian cancer, then it is imperative that you contact a personal injury lawyer right away to discuss your case. Initial consultations are always free and confidential.
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