Gardasil Linked to Guillain-Barre Syndrome

We have long been writing about the associations between Merck’s <"">Gardasil injection and a variety of adverse event cases that bear striking similarities to each other. Gardasil is the vaccine administered to prevent some— but not all—forms of the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is linked to cervical cancer. Recently, following scores of serious illnesses in young girls receiving Gardasil injections, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began looking at the possible association between the controversial injection and paralysis.

Now, Web MD Health News is writing that girls and women being injected with Gardasil may be at increased risk of developing the serious Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS). GBS is a peripheral nervous system disorder linked to some illnesses in the early days following injection. “… there is clear evidence from our database of an increased incidence of Guillain-Barre syndrome in the first six weeks, especially the first two weeks, after vaccination,” Nizar Souayah, MD, of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in Newark, told Web MD.

According to Web MD, 26 in 10 million in the first two weeks and 30 in 10 million in the first six weeks after being vaccinated come down with the life-threatening GBS, said Souayah. GBS is usually prompted by an infection, said Web MD, with the body’s immune system attacking the nervous system; sometimes, surgery or vaccines will provoke GBS. The study looked at data from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), which is managed by the CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and found that there were 53 cases of Guillain-Barre reported after Gardasil vaccinations in the United States from 2006 to 2008, said Web MD, noting that the majority developed within six weeks of receiving the shot and over one-third within the first two weeks.

Concerns between GBS and vaccinations were noticed after a link was revealed during the 1976-1977 swine flu season, said Web MD. Since, “there is always a concern when any vaccine program is introduced,” says Ken Gorson, MD, a neurologist at Tufts University/St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center in Boston, quoted Web MD.

In a report earlier this year, The Vue Weekly pointed out that many believe over-immunization is a major contributor to the rise in autoimmune disease and parents are often pressured to immunize. But, in the case of Gardasil, perhaps avoiding the vaccine might not be so irresponsible given that, as The Vue pointed out, “the research was done by those who stand to gain magnificently” and the drug has been the focus of “an extensive public relations campaign” but “has been subjected to little independent scientific review.”

Of note, the Vue reported that the Nobel Prize Committee—which awarded the 2008 Nobel Prize in Medicine to German scientist Harald zur Hauser for his work linking HPV to cervical cancer—is facing investigation over bribery allegations for taking payments from the drug company that owns the patents and collects royalties on both—U.S. and overseas—HPV vaccines. Also, said the Vue, an FDA document stated that, “identifying and typing HPV infection does not bear a direct relationship to stratification of the risk for cervical cancer. Most acute infections caused by HPV are self-limiting. It is the persistent HPV infection that may act as a tumor promoter in cancer induction … most infections are short-lived and not associated with cervical cancer.”Ben Folds: Live at My Space full movie

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