Talc May Be Tied to Ovarian Cancer and Serious Lung Problems, Health Canada Warns

Talc May Be Tied to Ovarian Cancer and Serious Lung Problems, Health Canada Warns
The Canadian government is warning that exposure of the female genital area to talc-containing products may be associated with ovarian cancer and that inhalation of loose talc powder may lead to potentially serious respiratory problems.  The warnings appear in a draft screening assessment written by Environment and Climate Change Canada and Health Canada. Talc is a naturally occurring mineral, used in many cosmetic and self-care products. The document analyzes the available data about the ecological risk and the safety to human health of talc-containing products including baby, body, face, and foot powders; diaper and rash creams; and genital antiperspirants and deodorants. Consistent with other international regulatory and advisory bodies, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the report states that no critical health effects were identified from swallowing talc or putting it on the skin. Many applications of talc — such as its use in paper, plastics, paint, ceramics, putties, and food, as well as many cosmetics, natural health products, and non-prescription drugs — are also not a concern to human health, Health Canada said in a press release.   But some studies have suggested that the inhalation of loose talc powder can cause difficulty breathing, reduce lung function and cause scarring, or fibrosis, of the lungs. "When you inhale talc, the fine talc particles will get lodged inside of the lung, and over time, there's a cumulative effect associated with that," David Morin, director general of Health Canada's safe environments directorate, said in a news story by Sheryl Ubelacker. Talc is considered a restricted ingredient in cosmetics in Canada. The Cosmetic Ingredient Hotlist ind
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