Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has been ordered to pay $417m to Eva Echeverria in the first talc case to be brought in California.

Echeverria filed a lawsuit against the company claiming that she developed ovarian cancer after using its talcum powder.

According to CNN.com, Echeverria said that she would have stopped using the powder if there had been a warning label on the product.

A jury in the Superior Court of California for Los Angeles County said the company will pay $70m to Echeverria as compensatory damages and additional $347m in punitive damages.

"We will appeal today’s verdict because we are guided by science, which supports the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder."

Several lawsuits have been filed by talc users in the US for failure to warn consumers about cancer risks.

Responding to the verdict, Johnson & Johnson Consumer Global Media Relations Carol Goodrich issued a statement that read: “We will appeal today’s verdict because we are guided by science, which supports the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder.”

The statement added: “In April, the National Cancer Institute’s Physician Data Query Editorial Board wrote, ‘The weight of evidence does not support an association between perineal talc exposure and an increased risk of ovarian cancer.’ We are preparing for additional trials in the US and we will continue to defend the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder.”

More information from consumersafety.org can be found here


Image: Johnson & Johnson Baby Powder. Photo: courtesy of Mike Mozart/Flickr.