By Wendi Lewis
Despite outcry from parents of girls who have received the HPV vaccine Gardasil, and criticism about the vaccine’s effectiveness from one of its own creators, this month the American Academy of Pediatrics endorsed its use for boys. This follows a similar recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Critics of the vaccine, which has been linked to thousands of complaints of serious adverse side effects, are left to wonder why their voices are not being heard.
When it was introduced by manufacturer Merck, Inc., in 2006, Gardasil was marketed as a preventative treatment for cervical cancer. A glitzy ad campaign urged parents to vaccinate their daughters, to ensure that “One Less” girl would die of cervical cancer.
But what followed were mounting reports to the CDC’s Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS). To date, there have been more than 20,000 reports of serious side effects that developed after patients received one or more of the three scheduled doses of the vaccine. These include blood clots, paralysis, seizures, Bells Palsy, Guillain-Barre Syndrome and pancreatitis.
Additionally, VAERS has collected information about 71 deaths among young people following HPV vaccinations, including three boys, as of September 15, 2011.