Quebec court OKs lawsuit alleging link between talc powder and cancer

A Quebec court has authorized a class action lawsuit against two pharmaceutical giants that alleges the regular use of talc powder is linked to a higher risk of ovarian cancer.

The lawsuit is being filed on behalf of Quebecers who have used Johnson & Johnson baby powder or Valeant's product entitled Shower to Shower in their genital area and were later diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Lawyer Tony Merchant tells The Canadian Press studies have shown there is a link between talc products and increased risk of cancer and that the companies should have warned women or pulled the products from the shelves.

None of the allegations contained in the lawsuit have been proven in court.

Similar legal action has been filed elsewhere in Canada and in the United States, including a US$417 million verdict against Johnson & Johnson that was later thrown out by a California judge.

A lawyer for Johnson & Johnson did not wish to comment on the Quebec class action, but the company has argued there is no proof its products cause health problems.