Using talcum powder just once a week to keep fresh can raise the risk of womb cancer by up to 24 per cent, a study has claimed.
It warned that powder particles applied to the genital area can travel into a woman's body and trigger inflammation, which allows cancer cells to flourish. Around 40 per cent of women are thought to use talc regularly as part of their personal hygiene routine. Previous studies have linked talcum powder use with ovarian tumours.
However, this is the first research to suggest that it could also cause womb, or endometrial, cancer, a disease that kills around 1,000 women a year in England and Wales.
Scientists from Harvard Medical School in Boston investigated talc's health risks and found a significant increase in risk in older women who had been through the menopause. In the U.S. report, which was published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, they said older women may be more at risk because they have been exposed to talc's effects for longer.