UPDATE: FOIA uncovers 16 new Gardasil-related deaths

Documents from the Food & Drug Administration obtained by Judicial Watch under the Freedom of Information Act indicate that Gardasil, a cervical cancer vaccine manufactured by Merck that FDA officials fast-tracked for approval in 2006, may not be not as safe as its industry and government backers assured the public it was.

FDA records show that 16 new deaths (including four suicides) and 3,589 “adverse reactions” tied to Gardasil were reported in the 16 months between May 2009 and September 2010. The adverse reactions included 213 cases of permanent disability. The FDA also received 25 reports of paralyzing Guillian Barre Syndrome in young girls and women who had received the vaccine.

One 13-year-old died 37 days after receiving a Gardasil shot. “I first declined getting her the vaccination but her doctor ensured me it was safe,” the girl’s mother told the FDA.

In March, I talked to two families in Maryland and New York whose healthy, athletic, college-aged daughters suddenly dropped dead shortly after getting the shot. Another girl in Maryland suffered a major debilitating stroke days after receiving her second Gardasil injection in 2008.

Emily Tarsell, whose 21-year-old daughter Christina died 18 days after receiving her first Gardasil injection, accused Merck of misrepresenting her daughter’s case in the report the pharmaceutical company sent to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System run by the Centers for Disease Control.

Read full story here
I wear many hats but history, economics and political observance have always been a passion. I am a graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Business with a degree in Information Systems and Digital Business with a minor in European History. I work for a small mom-and-pop IT consulting and software design company. We deal in servicing mostly government funded non-profit mental and behavioral health care agencies in the state of Ohio. In this I deal with Medicaid and Medicare funds and have a little insight on the boondoggles of government there. Thankfully the undemanding nature of my daily profession gives me ample time to read and stay aware of our current state of affairs which I find stranger than fiction in many instances. In addition to being in the IT field, I have also been self employed with a small contracting company so I might know a thing or two about the plight of small business that employs 71% of the American workforce. I however don't draw my knowledge from my day jobs, which I have had a few; I draw it from an intense obsession with facts and observation about the world in which I live. I do have formal education in things such as history, economics and finance particularly as it pertains to global issues, but I have come to find much of what I thought I knew from the formalities of a state university I had to unlearn through much time and independent research. I hope you enjoy what I bring you which is not often heard in the mainstream news outlets. I would like to think my own personal editorializing is not only edifying but thought provoking while not at all obnoxious. That last one may be a hard to achieve.

3 Comments

  1. Jinx

    February 6, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    The only “smart” medication is insulin which goes directly to the problem. Every other medication (including vitamins and other herbal medications) affects every cell in the body. Having said that, before making the decision about using any medication or supplement one has to weigh possible benefits versus possible risks. Health food supplements, herbal medications, vitamins, etc. also have side effects and adverse reactions (including death) during use, the only difference being that they are not required to keep records of said events, nor are they required to disclose to the public possible side effects as are required by prescription medications via the FDA. The risks of developing cervical cancer have been found to be much higher in young women due to the multiple sex partners they tend to have as instances of cervical cancer have increased exponentially since the advent of birth control and the tendency for women to be sexually active with multiple males over their lifetime. The prevailing theory on the cause of cervical cancer is that when a female first becomes sexually active she has to develop antibodies against the flora the male grows on his penis. Formerly known as the “honeymoon disease” (named because women in the past tended to remain virgins until marriage and once married, developed vaginal irritation and infection during the honeymoon due to the flora on her husband’s penis), it was easily treated and the woman had a decreased risk of cervical cancer as a result because she was likely to need to develop antibodies against the flora of one male only. Cervical cancer has to be treated by surgery and any surgery comes with a high risk of death (primarily from the anesthetic). If the cancer isn’t confined to the cervix, then hysterectomy becomes necessary. For unknown reasons, after hysterectomy, women often don’t utilize estrogen as effectively even when the ovaries remain intact and are spared from removal. Many women have become suicidal after hysterectomy and when hysterectomy is done when a woman is young, she is likely to need and want hormone replacement medications which come with their own risk factors (but early menopause is symptomatic in the young and premature aging isn’t something young people want to experience, estrogen being the hormone responsible for rapid cellular division). While the issue of SIDS is familiar to most of us, the issue to sudden death in young, healthy people is not so widely discussed, but happens more frequently than we would like to see. Since humans can’t be confined and what they eat and take can’t be regulated, as can be done with laboratory animals in a lab, it is more difficult to positively determine whether a death or adverse effect was caused by a medication or caused by a combination of the medication along with some other ingested material (other drugs, foods, environmental factors, etc); however, if one has taken or recently taken a certain regulated medication, the death or adverse effect will be listed in the reports of adverse medication events. For example, when taking antidepressants, the drug companies warn against taking St. John’s Wort as death is too often the result of combining the two, but the manufacturers of St. John’s Wort aren’t required to post the same warning nor track or report the number of deaths that happened when people took their product along with antidepressants. It would be equally difficult to conclude that the 4 reported suicides were definitely caused by the Gardasil; however, having occurred shortly after having the shot, it would be listed as an adverse effect (unfortunately suicide among young people is occurring at alarming rates regardless of whether they use medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, etc.). Reproductive surgeries, diseases, etc. can have long-term ramifications, both physical and mental. Sexually transmitted diseases (including those considered rather low level) are more difficult to treat in females (due to our anatomy), and cause many reproductive difficulties as a result of having contracted them. Increased risk of cervical cancer has been found in those females with a history of STD’s, also. Abstinence until marriage, followed by both partners being monogamous decreases the risks of multiple reproductive problems, particularly in females. Failing to abstain from sex until marriage, females(and males) should be encouraged not to engage in casual sexual intercourse with multiple partners. (While that may not be seen as particularly fun or modern, limiting sexual activity eliminates quite a few problems.) Perhaps a more logical and reasonable decision as to whether a girl or woman should have the Gardasil injection should be made when the girl or woman becomes sexually active and made based upon whether she is sexually active with a number of males or is engaging in sex only when in a long term relationship. (In other words, deciding based upon risk factors.) This is certainly how my daughter and I made the decision about the Gardasil shot (and I am a medical professional). In closing I would say that I would not rule out Gardasil or any other medication based upon reports of people experiencing adverse or unexpected events as the numbers of these are very small compared to the numbers of people who used the Gardasil or other medication and experienced no adverse or unexpected events. The diseases and conditions that these medications are designed to treat also have adverse or unexpected results. The bottom line is that we should all try to decrease our risk factors for disease and be educated, wise consumers of health care, including medications (whether vitamins, minerals, herbals, prescription, etc.), and changing our behaviors often is part of decreasing risk factors.

  2. Dee Eliassen

    February 12, 2011 at 7:35 am

    I believe those who have investigated Gardasil and not just read what the drug company or the government department being paid to promote it are saying, are not so eager to promote Gardasil once they become enlightened. The number of doctors (and scientists) worldwide who are investigating this and now advising against its use is growing. They are trying to warn other medical professionals not to rely solely on what government agencies and the drug companies are saying. Some of these have gone so far as to take it into a lab and find out for themselves the truth of what this vaccine is really all about and are now very against this vaccine. There is even a website of medical professionals who are willing to speak up and share their findings about some of the more dangerous (and unnecessary) vaccines being pushed now. It’s all money to these drug companies.

    By the way, my daughter is one of the many thousands who has been seriously injured by this vaccine. I’m not going to get into a discussion here and now about this suffice to say any vaccine that does this to a person should be illegal. Heavens, even the Doctor who headed the team who tested Gardasil is against it… what does that tell us?
    Parents – investigate before you vaccinate. And no, I am not anti vaccine, but I sure am anti Gardasil now I’ve done my homework and you can do yours too starting here: http://www.truthaboutgardasil.org

  3. Breanna

    April 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm

    I am 13 years old and my parents made me get the shot 3 days ago, along with tdap, chickenpox, and a tetanus shot. The place where I got Gardasil at is bright red and swelling I have also been starting to get headaches lately. Reading all of this is frightening. I really hope my parents won’t make me get the other two shots.

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