Gardasil Vaccination – Helpful or Harmful?
Picture this print ad: a young woman is smiling a wide, toothy grin and she is happy to be alive. Of course, she is also donning an adorable outfit. Pretty swirls of blue, pink and brown flowers adorn the page. She is quoted saying things like, “I’ll do everything I can to help my dreams come true,” referring to her choice on getting vaccinated. The vaccine is Gardasil, which protects its recipients from the Human Papillomavirus (HPV). Apparently, it’s trendy, it’s cool and it will help you achieve your dreams.
Marketing is great if you’re looking to sell something. A nice photo and a few digitally created flowers can make any subject seem dreamy. But the reality is that many girls are getting sick from their Gardasil injections.
These injections are filled with ingredients like yeast, salt and water. Nope, they’re not making bread dough, that’s just the base. The other parts of the recipe include a compound of aluminum, used to jump-start the immune system. They also add a dash of Polysorbate 80, which has its very own list of allergic reactions and negative side effects. Don’t forget the pinch of Sodium Borate, the main chemical in boric acid, which is found in roach powder. Alas, the star of this FDA approved recipe, Protein types 6, 11, 16 and 18 of HPV.
This is how Merck & Co. creates the perfect vaccine, a series of three injections that will “gard” our daughters against HPV. According to Merck & Co. and the FDA, this vaccine will safeguard girls from cervical cancer and other HPV diseases. This could be a fairly true outcome, as it should protect them from four strains of high and low risk HPV. However, HPV is a group of over 100 related viruses and more than 30 of them are passed from person to person through sexual contact.
Therefore, boys have the same chance of contracting and carrying these viruses as girls do. However, Gardasil is marketed as a cervical cancer vaccination. It is recommended for girls and women between the ages of 9 and 26. The hope is to limit or eradicate repeated HPV infections among women, as repeated infections can cause abnormal cell growth. This increases a young woman’s risk for cervical cancer. Most HPV infections go away on their own, however high risk strains have a higher chance of leading to cell abnormality.
It is obviously important for girls, women and men to be aware of HPV. It is also important to take certain precautions. Gardasil may seem like a great answer to a nagging question for some, but it is currently under scrutiny from the media, the FDA, CDC and more importantly, parents. This examination will persist as long as girls continue to get sick.
According to the CDC, Center for Disease Control, as of December 31, 2008 more than 23 million doses of Gardasil were distributed in the U.S. Of those doses, the CDC received 11,916 reports of adverse affects that were linked to Gardasil vaccinations. There have also been 32 reports of U.S. deaths among females who received the Gardasil vaccination. Some of the illnesses that have been reported to the CDC, include, but are not limited to, lupus, fibromayalgia, seizures, massive wart outbreaks, rashes, paralysis and blood clots. At this point, long-term side effects have not been established due to lack of scientific studies.
If you’re concerned about HPV but do not want to receive a vaccination, you can lower your risk naturally. If you’re having sex with more than one partner, make sure to use condoms. Although studies are not linked directly to HPV, they have found lower rates of cervical cancer among women who use condoms. Also, pap smears are a must. Doctor’s are able to detect high risk HPV viruses early on. Unfortunately, there are no approved HPV screening tests for men at this time. For more information on HPV and cervical cancer, go to www.cdc.gov.
2. www.fda.gov “Patient information about Gardasil”
3. www.howstuffworks.com – Medical encyclopedia “Sodium Borate poisoning”
4. www.cancer.gov – The National Cancer Institute – “Human Papillomaviruses and Cancer”
5. www.cbsnews.com “Vaccine Watch – Gardasil Side-Effects?”