Rosenblum: HPV vaccine worries understandable, but unfounded

  • Article by: GAIL ROSENBLUM , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 24, 2013 - 6:49 AM

It’s good to hear that more of our kids are getting vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer.

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vampress_meMar. 24, 13 9:48 AM

From the FDA's website - "Gardasil was evaluated and approved in six months under FDA's priority review process" "Four studies, one in the United States and three multinational, were conducted in 21,000 women to show how well Gardasil worked in women between the ages of 16 and 26 by giving them either the vaccine or placebo.  ... While the study period was not long enough for cervical cancer to develop, the prevention of these cervical precancerous lesions is believed highly likely to result in the prevention of those cancers.". So, we have a study in which approximately 11,000 women got the vaccine (not a placebo), a short study period, and an admission that the timeframe was too short for cervical cancer to develop, but we're supposed to trust that the vaccine is safe with no long term study as these women age. And 'experts' wonder why more girls aren't being immunized? Maybe parents aren't willing to have their children used as guinea pigs for a product the FDA (an entity no longer looked at as infallible) admits was pushed through for approval in 6 months with a relatively small number of women in the studies used for the approval process.

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bentingeMar. 24, 13 2:18 PM

Also check out website of Dr. Mercola. You'll learn all about the deaths this drug has caused in otherwise healthy young girls. Also, a class action suit is underway for the people who have been permanently disabled from this drug. Anyone who says this drug is completely safe must work for the FDA or Gardasil.

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swmnguyMar. 24, 13 8:14 PM

I'm all in favor of healthy skepticism of the claims of corporate medicine. I remember when the official line was that children simply did not have adverse reactions to the MMR live vaccine; right up to the point where they substituted a partially killed vaccine with no explanation. Well, all my siblings had severe reactions to the vaccine, and there were deaths. My parents had a family doctor who was more loyal to his patients than the AMA and the pharmaceutical industry, so for the last couple of my siblings he arranged to get experimental doses of the partially-killed vaccine. And what do you know, those two babies did not have extreme reactions, despite the self-interested lies of official corporate medicine.

That said, I'm not so sure about Dr. Joseph Mercola. He has built a practice on hawking dubious medical devices and making very questionable claims for supplements he himself makes and sells. He favors the "Caveman" diet. He doesn't believe in avian flu. He thinks microwave ovens use radiation. He doesn't believe the HIV virus causes AIDS. He thinks most vitamin supplements and indeed sunscreen, cause cancer and disease, except for (of course) the ones he sells on his website.

Again, I'm pretty skeptical. But I read mainstream and alternative critiques of the Gardasil vaccine, and on the preponderance of evidence, we decided to have our daughter vaccinated. In our current corporate-dominated medical environment, it's hard to be sure you'll hear of adverse effects, but this one seemed to be a better bet than some.

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marsbonfireMar. 25, 13 8:46 AM

My daughter just had her second booster with absolutely no problems. I have a feeling that the "skeptics" questioning the validity and safety of this vaccine are motivated more by morality than actual health concerns.

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garagewineMar. 26, 13 2:22 PM

"So, we have a study in which approximately 11,000 women got the vaccine (not a placebo), a short study period, and an admission that the timeframe was too short for cervical cancer to develop, but we're supposed to trust that the vaccine is safe with no long term study as these women age. And 'experts' wonder why more girls aren't being immunized?"----The evidence says what it says. There may (and I stress the word "may") be risks associated with receiving the vaccine. There are also risks associated with not receiving it, namely an increased risk of HPV. Use the information available to you and make an informed decision. Don't rely on scare stories or conspiracy theories, whatever you do.

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