Talcum Powder, Asbestos Use & Mesothelioma Risks

Asbestos in talcum powder has the potential to increase the risk of mesothelioma, an aggressive and rare form of cancer. This could put both consumers and industrial workers at risk. 

Why Consumers Love It

Talcum powder has been widely used by consumers. It has historically been used by consumers to protect and perfume the skin for over a century. Once absorbed into the skin, it also provides lubrication. However, it has been linked to the development of mesothelioma.

Industrial Talc

Industrial talc is another widely used product that is popular for manufacturing paper, flooring, roofing, ceramics and rubber. More recently, there is much conversation about using this product due to the potential for harm. There have been several lawsuits relating to this. 

Not Inherently Dangerous

While talc itself is generally believed to be safe, it is often mixed with asbestos related products. Talc is a naturally-occurring product found in either curly or straight forms. Because it is a natural product, it is sometimes alongside asbestos fibers. Claims that talc is free of asbestos have come under fire. 

Industrial Talc

Industrial talc is found in several products and is not inherently dangerous. It is seen in anti-caking with animal feed, in finishing glazes and artware, and in the paper industry to improve printing while lowering surface friction.

There is concern for the individuals who work in these industries and individuals who mine talc, however. The worry is for exposure to contaminated materials, leading to increased asbestos exposure which could eventually cause disease.