The link between disease and asbestos was first recognized in the early 20th century, but illnesses related to exposure to the mineral have continued to the present day. Although it’s been decades since it was banned as a material in construction and manufacturing, there are insidious ways it can still wreak havoc on human health.
The company Johnson & Johnson recently said it would stop selling its talcum-based baby powders after numerous lawsuits alleging a link between the powders and cancer. Studies show that talcum is mined near asbestos, and can become contaminated with the mineral as a result.
Company argues product is safe despite evidence otherwise
According to reports, the company maintains that its product is safe and cites other reasons for the decision to permanently stop selling it, but investigations found that the company had been privately concerned that trace amounts of asbestos were potentially in its product.
Companies who deny the dangers of their products in spite of mounting evidence, research and anecdotal experiences endanger consumers. In Johnson & Johnson’s case, there’s no product recall, and stores will be allowed to sell any remaining inventory.
A silent threat
There are numerous sources of asbestos that many people are unaware of. The more that manufacturers deny the risks and fight to keep their products alive, the more people will be exposed to potential health threats.
Mesothelioma is a common cancer that arises from repeated asbestos exposure. There is a lot more research today that indicates a direct correlation between the two, which is why companies like Johnson & Johnson must continue to be held accountable for possibly exposing consumers to harm.