What is Human Papillomavirus and how should you protect yourself? Learn why Gardasil may not be as safe as some would like you to believe.
Five years ago, Gardasil debuted as a vaccine that can help prevent against HPV (Human Papillomavirus) that can lead to cervical cancer and sold over $1.1 billion in its first nine months on the market. Now, with sales going down (ONLY $212 million today) people are beginning to become more educated or are seeing just how dangerous this vaccine really is.
As a vaccine intended for children, it doesn’t make sense to vaccinate to try to prevent an infection that is cleared from your body without any negative effects within two years in most healthy persons, and is not transmitted in a school setting like other airborne diseases that are easily transmitted in crowded conditions. It is important to distinguish between HPV and cancer, just because you currently have HPV, or may have had the infection in the past, does NOT mean you have cancer or will get cancer. Today, cervical cancer is not even in the top 10 cancers that kill American women every year.
There are at least 15 strains of HPV that can lead to cervical cancer in those that are not able to clear it from their body, but Gardasil was made and is designed to or at least purports to “protect” people from only two of those strains that can potentially lead to the disease. Common risk factors for HPV include smoking, long term birth control use, multiple births, and certain sexual behaviors. In the USA, it is expected that around 20 million Americans have HPV at a given time and is so common that most sexually active people will get it at some point in their live and not even realize it.[1. Prevention of Genital Human Papillomavirus Infection, A CDC report, January 2004]
However, despite what the CDC would like you to believe, Gardasil’s safety record is in serious question. As of September 28, 2010, the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) has more than 18,000 Gardasil-related adverse events listed in it, including at least 65 deaths.[2. National Vaccine Information Center, 2011] In another report made available by the National Vaccine Information Center, some side effects of Gardasil included blood clots, cardiac arrest, fainting, syncope, lupus, stroke, various forms of disability, and death.[3. NVIC, 2011]
This vaccine has even been at the center of recent political debates and criticism. Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann is getting some pointed criticism from scientists for suggesting that the HPV vaccine poses serious health risks. Bachmann mentioned that just because big companies and the government tell Americans they should be getting the vaccine for their young daughters it must then, be good for them. This information is misleading and that there should be, she says an “opt in” policy for vaccines instead of an “opt out” policy in the form of various exemption forms that are required for many vaccines today.[4. CBS, 2011]
Aside from the recent political popularity, the fact is that young girls are being maimed and even dying from this vaccine that is said to protect against HPV. It is given to female’s ages 9 on up and is now even promoted to families with young boys that could potentially carry the virus. A virus that is widely spread through sexual activity is being given to 9 year olds? This is a great money maker; a complete series of the vaccine is 3 shots worth an average of $400, some doctors charging upward of $900. Ideally, parents would put money to work by investing in health so they would not have to being afraid of a virus and other entities that are thwarted by a strong immune system.