A San Francisco woman who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer can go to trial against the makers of Cashmere Bouquet talcum powder, which she used for 20 years and later learned it may have contained asbestos.
The state Supreme Court unanimously denied review Wednesday of a challenge by Colgate-Palmolive to an earlier ruling that reinstated Mary Lyons’ lawsuit.
Lyons said she first used Cashmere Bouquet as a young child in the early 1950s, when her mother powdered her after every bath, and continued using it on her own until the early 1970s. She was diagnosed in October 2015 with malignant mesothelioma, a cancer commonly caused by asbestos.
Colgate-Palmolive began manufacturing Cashmere Bouquet in 1871 and sold it until 1995. The talc ingredient in the product came from mines in Montana, North Carolina and Italy. A mineralogist who was an expert witness for Lyons said he found asbestos in talc from all three mines, and in Cashmere Bouquet that was sold in the years that Lyons used it.
The company’s expert witnesses said the powder was free of asbestos.
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