1994 – 2009
Jenny was a 15 year old girl battling a rapidly degenerative disease that some MD’s think may be linked to the HPV vaccine she received shortly before symptoms appeared. (Although there is no scientific proof one way, or the other, Dr. Diane Harper, lead researcher, who helped design and carry out Phase II and Phase III safety and effectiveness studies prior to Gardasil’s approval and acted as a consultant to Merck, believes that the possibility of triggering a genetic disorder within a family has to be seriously considered.)
The following is an exerpt from Jenny’s Journey, a website maintained by Jenny’s family and friends to help locate similar cases:
On a sunny afternoon in May 2007, a tearful Jenny told her mother how her seventh-grade gym class laughed when she tripped on a hurdle that everyone else cleared easily. A few weeks later came the odd limp. Gradually, weakness spread; her muscles atrophied; her world shrank.
Jenny’s parents frantically rushed her to an ever wider range of specialists, to no avail. By spring 2008, Jenny was a quadriplegic who could breathe only with machine support. She clung to life for almost a year but she never made it to see another spring.
No one knows exactly when Jenny’s disease began—or what disease she had. World-class neurologists suspect Lou Gehrig’s disease, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This relentless killer spares the mind, while methodically destroying the body’s motor neurons until the patient’s body slips into total, irreversible paralysis.
Yet medical opinion is not unanimous. The CDC estimates the odds of ALS among teenage girls at 1 in 3 million, less than those of being struck by lightning. A far more common cause of paralysis among teenage girls is autoimmune disease.
Jenny passed away on 15 March 2009, surrounded by her family.
Visit Jenny’s Journey for more details of the events surrounding this young girl’s sudden illness following her Gardasil Vaccination. Jenny’s family is also trying to locate others who have experienced symptoms of the disease that took their daughter’s life in an attempt to prevent it from happening to others.