Three Deaths Linked To Merck’s HPV Vaccine – Gardasil. Does the benefit really outweigh the risk?
Posted by Catherine Morgan on June 11, 2007
Since my original post on the controversy surrounding the Gardasil vaccine, I have already added three updates. Recently I was made aware of new information released by the FDA regarding the more serious adverse reactions to this vaccine. Most upseting is the fact that at least three young girls have died within hours of receiving this controversial vaccine.
(Washington, DC) — Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released documents obtained from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, detailing 1,637 reports of adverse reactions to the vaccination for human papillomavirus (HPV), Gardasil. Three deaths were related to the vaccine. One physician’s assistant reported that a female patient “died of a blood clot three hours after getting the Gardasil vaccine.” Two other reports, on girls 12 and 19, reported deaths relating to heart problems and/or blood clotting. — read full article
As of May 11, 2007, the 1,637 adverse vaccination reactions reported to the FDA via the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) included 371 serious reactions. Of the 42 women who received the vaccine while pregnant, 18 experienced side effects ranging from spontaneous abortion to fetal abnormities.
Side effects published by Merck & Co. warn the public about potential pain, fever, nausea, dizziness and itching after receiving the vaccine. Indeed, 77% of the adverse reactions reported are typical side effects to vaccinations. But other more serious side effects reported include paralysis, Bells Palsy, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, and seizures. — — read full article
What troubles me the most about this is; Parents understand that with all vaccines there will be a very small percent of people (in this case young girls) that will have an adverse reaction ending in death. The major difference is that vaccines like the MMR vaccines (given to our children to prevent Measles, Mumps, and Rubella) are essential in saving many lives from these highly contagious and often fatal diseases. So, the benefits of these vaccines most definitely outweigh the risks…(the small percent of serious adverse reactions with MMR vaccine is still only a tiny fraction of the amount of deaths we would see without this vaccine).
Unfortunately this is not the case with the HPV vaccine. I think if a parent thought that their daughter might die from a vaccine that has limited protection against a treatable (non life-threatening) virus, they might not see a benefit that outweighs that risk.
A possible scenario…
Even if these girls (who have or will die from this vaccine) had been exposed to a strain of HPV that eventually caused them to develop cervical cancer, and they never went to routine doctors appointments, or had had a routine PAP test…Even if all of this took place, more than likely that daughter would still have lived a long and productive life before tragically dying of cervical cancer in her (late) adulthood. However, even more likely would be that within the ten year period that it would take for this type of cancer to become fatal…this woman would have been diagnosed and successfully treated and gone on to live a long life. Instead a young girl (between age 9 and 11) has died because of a vaccine that has no guarantee of preventing the above scenario anyway.
Essentially the girls currently getting this vaccine are the “test subjects” or “guinea-pigs” of the pharmaceutical companies. How many will have serious reactions? How long will the vaccine work? Will this vaccine really reduce the amount of deaths due to cervical cancer? The account of the three girls that have died from this vaccine are reported from practitioners that gave this vaccine to them (they were not part of any trial), that is why the information is only coming out now. The long term “trial” or “experimentation” of the effectiveness of this vaccine is literally happening right now, with our daughters. This would be o.k. if it was our choice to be a part of this trial, but instead we are being told it is safe, effective, and possibly even mandatory.This is just wrong, and is why I am so adamant in having the facts get out to the public. It’s o.k. to get this vaccine for your daughter, but you should be told all the facts up front…you shouldn’t have to stumble upon the facts on the internet…not when it comes to the safety of our children.
For more information you can see the original post & comments…
For the sake of argument some are trying to explain away this new information, for instance this Huffington Post article. However, it only addresses one aspect of the controversy, there is no mention of the fact that the girls getting this vaccine are essentially the “test subjects” on whether the benefits of this vaccine outweigh the risks.
More to the point, the three deaths reported to VAERS after HPV were heart attacks that followed administration of the vaccine by three hours, a week and two weeks, respectively. It’s a good thing that they were reported to VAERS. We need to know if people are dying after vaccination. But when people die following a vaccination, it isn’t necessarily the vaccination that caused it, a fact that generations of vaccine critics have failed to clearly see as they bungle their interpretations of VAERS data.
Doesn’t “necessarily” mean that it wasn’t due to the vaccine either.
When the CDC, responding to the three death reports, interviewed doctors and examined the charts, they found that one, a case of myocarditis, was caused by influenza virus. The other two were blood clots in adolescents taking birth control pills. Birth control pills are known to raise the risk of blood clots. “These deaths are tragic but appear to have causes unrelated to vaccination,” says Dr. John Iskander, co-director of the Immunization Safety Office at the CDC.
Could it be that if these girls were not on the birth control pill this vaccine would not have killed them? Maybe. But if they hadn’t received the vaccine, might they have gone on to live without ever having a blood clot? Maybe. This is the problem, we just don’t know. For this reason parents and medical practitioners need to weigh the benefits of a vaccine that prevents some strains of a non life-threatening virus, against the risks and possible unknown risks of this vaccine.
UPDATE: This is from a comment to this Huffington Post article…
This is from Moira Dolan, M.D. from Medical Accountability Network:
Since HPV is found in connection with most cervical cancers, the theory was that a vaccine against HPV would prevent cervical cancer. However the vaccine studies couldn’t demonstrate this, simply because there were no cases of cervical cancer in the vaccinated group or in the group that got dummy shots. So they used a substitute measure (a ‘surrogate marker’) for cancer. They compared abnormal pre-cancerous Pap results in people who were vaccinated versus not vaccinated.
The vaccine is nearly 100% effective in preventing four types of HPV infection. Two of the four subtypes included in the vaccine are currently responsible for 70% of cervical cancer. So we would expect a 70% reduction in precancerous Pap results, right? However pre-cancerous Paps only went down by 12% to 45%, depending on which population was studied. (See below for the different populations and the reasons for this spread.) Why didn’t the vaccine cause a 70% reduction in pre-cancers in the general population?
This could be explained by some method of viral shift. Since the vaccine HPV types got pretty much wiped out as being a cause of pre-cancers SOMETHING must have taken their place because pre-cancers only reduced by 12.2% to 16.5%. The alternate explanation (raised by an FDA scientist) is that the theory that ‘HPV causes cancer’ could be backwards. Maybe HPV is just a so-called ‘opportunistic infection’ that is allowed to flourish un-checked in the vicinity of cancer cells.
U.S. statistics show there are 30 to 40 cervical cancer cases per year per one million women age 9-26, the ages the vaccine was tested on. Gardasil®’s reduction of pre-cancers by 12.2% to 16.5% in the general population would mean that instead of 30 to 40 cases of cancer, there would only be 26 – 35 cancers. So it would take vaccination of a million girls to prevent cancer in 4 to 5 girls
What do you think of this new information. Do you think the “possible” benefit outweighs the risk?