American household brand Johnson & Johnson, earlier this October 2019, voluntarily recalled a single lot of its Johnson’s Baby Powder after the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found traces of asbestos in the product.
In their press release, the pharmaceutical giant said that the FDA found “sub-trace levels of chrysotile asbestos contamination (no greater than 0.00002%) in samples from a single bottle purchased from an online retailer.” It added that “despite the low levels reported, and in full cooperation and collaboration with the FDA” it is initiating this voluntary recall of a single lot of Johnson’s Baby Powder, from which the tested sample was taken.
This is not the first time Johnson and Johnson has faced backlash over asbestos contamination – earlier this year, the multinational company paid $USD 29 million in damage to a woman who claimed that asbestos in their baby powder caused her cancer.
While both incidents occured in the US, some parents have raised concern on the products sold here in Singapore. Speaking to theAsianparent, a mother of three who preferred to be named as Ms Lee said it is worrying to find out that these incidents involve “even such big companies.” She also said she will be more cautious and will take a second guess before purchasing the brand’s products.
theAsianparent has reached out to Johnson and Johnson Singapore for a comment and have not received as of the time of publishing.
What Is Asbestos?
Asbestos which is a fibre mineral that is used to make construction materials and automotive parts causes severe damage to the lungs through diseases like asbestosis and mesothelioma cancer. When you or your child ingest or inhales asbestos dust, the mineral fibers get trapped in your body leading to inflammation, scarring and even genetic scarring to the body’s cells.
Symptoms of Asbestosis:
- dry cough
- shortness of breath
- loss of appetite
- fingertips and toes that are rounder wider than usual
- chest tightness
Symptoms of Mesothelioma Cancer:
- chest pain
- painful coughing
- shortness of breath
- unusual lumps of tissue under the skin on your chest
- unexplained weight loss
Young children are especially at a higher risk of getting infected with asbestos because their lungs and respiratory systems have not fully developed. So in order to protect your family from asbestos, ensure you do thorough research on the ingredients list when buying any products.
Besides, baby powder, asbestos has been also found in crayons and even in makeup. However, parents, do note that it takes several years of continued exposure to asbestos to be diagnosed with these diseases.
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