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Gardasil and AB 499

Original post made by No to Gardasil on Feb 2, 2012

Recently, the Pleasanton Weekly published an article about a survivor of cervical cancer. Regardless of what you think about the HPV vaccine Gardasil, you need to know that Governor Brown signed AB 499, which gives minors the right to "consent to medical
care related to the prevention of a sexually transmitted disease," and that includes the HPV shot Gardasil:

Web Link

Web Link

Comments (12)

Posted by Former Student, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 8, 2012 at 12:05 am

While I think it is ridiculous to give twelve-year-olds STD treatment consent, I am not against Guardasil. Some kid who's 12 definitely doesn't have enough education on the subject of sex and STD's to be making a decision about it.

If I may ask, why are you against Guardasil?


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2012 at 4:07 pm

"If I may ask, why are you against Guardasil?"

Because it is an unnecessary vaccine that may or may not protect against only a few strains of a virus that causes HPV, an illness that most people (90%) clear on their own. Those who do not clear the virus on their own do not necessarily develop cervical cancer and the studies have shown that women who get a pap smear test every year can detect/treat abnormal cells before they become cancer.

Also, as you know, HPV is a sexually transmitted disease, and the vaccine was approved only for ages 9 to 26. The manufacturer to this day cannot tell you that if you vaccinate a 9 year old today, she will still have immunity when she becomes sexually active. And the immunity again is very limited (2 HPV types that may or may not lead to cervical cancer and 2 responsible for some types of genital warts)


This vaccine has had bad reactions in teens and the manufacturer for the most part has ignored those reactions (some reported death, others severe disability) and denies the vaccine could be responsible.


But Dr. Diane Harper, a scientist who was involved in the Guardasil trials has spoken against the vaccine:

"Dr. Diane Harper says young girls and their parents should receive more complete warnings before receiving the vaccine to prevent cervical cancer. Dr. Harper helped design and carry out the Phase II and Phase III safety and effectiveness studies to get Gardasil approved, and authored many of the published, scholarly papers about it. She has been a paid speaker and consultant to Merck. It's highly unusual for a researcher to publicly criticize a medicine or vaccine she helped get approved.

Dr. Harper joins a number of consumer watchdogs, vaccine safety advocates, and parents who question the vaccine's risk-versus-benefit profile."

Read the entire article:

Web Link

The bill signed by the governor gives 12 year olds the ability to consent to, among other things, the Guardasil vaccine. I do not think a 12 year old has the ability to understand the risk vs benefits of any vaccine


Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2012 at 8:41 pm

"But Dr. Diane Harper, a scientist who was involved in the Guardasil trials has spoken against the vaccine"

From the article:

"Dr. Harper agrees with Merck and the CDC that Gardasil is safe for most girls and women."

I wouldn't say that is speaking "against it".

I do agree that 12 years olds shouldn't be allowed to make the decision.


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 10, 2012 at 8:51 am

"I wouldn't say that is speaking "against it"."

If you read and understand the entire article, you would be able to say she is speaking against it. Here are some portions of the article that you failed to include (after the "safe for most girls...")


"Dr. Harper agrees with Merck and the CDC that Gardasil is safe for most girls and women. But she says the side effects reported so far call for more complete disclosure to patients. She says they should be told that protection from the vaccination might not last long enough to provide a cancer protection benefit, and that its risks - "small but real" - could occur more often than the cervical cancer itself would. "


Posted by john, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 10, 2012 at 1:00 pm

As far as I can tell, she is not telling people not to have their children vaccinated. She is only arguing for more disclosure.


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 10, 2012 at 6:57 pm

And here are Dr. Harper's comment about Gardasil for boys:

"On October 30, Dr. Diane Harper, principal investigator for the HPV vaccine and Professor of Medicine and Director, Gynecologic Cancer Prevention Research Group at University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine, stated on national television that “we don't know enough" to be able to make this recommendation for boys.

Dr. Harper conducted clinical trials in boys that showed poor vaccine effectiveness. For nearly two in five boys, the vaccine's protection wore off within a few years."

"“It is extremely troubling that Dr. Harper, the HPV vaccine's principal investigator, is concerned there's not enough science for this recommendation. Dr. Harper is one of the most credible and impartial voices on HPV. The ACIP, AAP and AAFP have moved forward prematurely in recommending this vaccine despite insufficient scientific research. Dr. Schaffner offered no scientific basis for his position except to say ‘beauty is in the eye of the beholder.'"

Both boys and girls must receive three doses of Merck's Gardasil vaccine to protect against disease; each dose costs more than $100, making the HPV vaccine the most expensive vaccine ever recommended by the CDC for universal use."

Web Link


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 10, 2012 at 7:00 pm

From National Public Radio: (2011)

"But Dr. Diane Harper, a professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine, says the vaccine is being way oversold."

"That's pretty striking, because Harper worked on studies that got the vaccines approved. And she has accepted grants from the manufacturers, although she says she doesn't any longer."

"Harper changed her mind when the vaccine makers started lobbying state legislatures to require schoolkids to get vaccinated."

""Ninety-five percent of women who are infected with HPV never, ever get cervical cancer," she says. "It seemed very odd to be mandating something for which 95 percent of infections never amount to anything.""

"By Harper's calculations, the tried-and-true method of regular Pap smears is a more effective way to prevent cervical cancer than the vaccines. "Pap smear screening is far and away the biggest thing a woman can do to protect herself, to prevent cervical cancer," she says.""

"Apart from the comparative advantages of vaccine versus Pap smears, Harper has another objection to mandating early vaccination at this point. She points out that studies so far show the vaccines protect for four or five years. Scientists hope protection will last for 10 years or more, but it's possible young women may need a booster shot later."

"As it stands now, Harper says, vaccinating an 11-year-old girl might not protect her when she needs it most " in her most sexually active years""

Web Link


Posted by Former Student, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 13, 2012 at 10:39 am

But all vaccines have serious risks, not just Guardasil. The dtap vaccine has risks for seizures and permanent brain damage, and it's a required vaccine. It may only prevent 2 HPV strains out of 40, but those two are the most common.

I got the Guardasil shots and my body didn't react well to it, but HPV immunity (which lasts 10 years according to my doctor) is worth a manageable reaction.


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 13, 2012 at 10:53 am

"HPV immunity (which lasts 10 years according to my doctor)"

Read Dr. Harper's comments, some as recent as 2011, with regards to how long immunity lasts. Unfortunately, doctors don't know a lot about vaccines, other than what they are told by the companies that sell them.

Dr. Harper was involved in the Gardasil clinical trials and knows more than any general doctor about length of immunity.

Fromer Student: are you posting under "john" as well?


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 13, 2012 at 10:59 am

". It may only prevent 2 HPV strains out of 40, but those two are the most common. "

And according to people involved in the Gardasil trials, 95 percent of people who get infected with HPV clear the infection on their own. So not only did you get a vaccine that offers limited immunity, but it is against a virus that 95 percent of people clear on their own.

And if you are a female, pap smears will be a better tool for the prevention of cervical cancer.

If you are a male, no need to worry about cervical cancer, and immunity (see Harper's trial results in males) lasts only 2-5 years


Posted by Former Student, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 13, 2012 at 2:10 pm

I'm not saying Guardasil should replace pap smears, I just don't think it's as detrimental as people make it out to be.

"So not only did you get a vaccine that offers limited immunity, but it is against a virus that 95 percent of people clear on their own."
Great, however, there's no way for me to know whether I'm apart of that 95 percent unless i actually get infected. Nowadays there is a 0 percent chance of getting polio, but much of the population still gets vaccinated for that. Though the risks are small in regards to the polio vaccine, they still exist.
Also, the article states that "It's highly unusual for a researcher to publicly criticize a medicine or vaccine she helped get approved." That's not true. Many researchers and MDs spoke out against the H1N1 and hepatitis vaccines.
And I'm not male, but those who get vaccinated are merely attempting to prevent then spread of the virus.
I'm not "john" I've always been former student. Except when was "student."


Posted by No to Gardasil, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 13, 2012 at 5:50 pm

"I just don't think it's as detrimental as people make it out to be."

It is not as effective as people make it out to be. And even if you are not among the 95 percent, the remaining 5 percent do not necessarily develop cervical cancer as a result of HPV infection. All data points to pap smears being the reason why rates of cervical cancer went down even prior to the vaccine.

The manufacturer is scaring people into getting an unnecessary vaccine that in the long run may not protect and some are falling for it.

btw, polio is not a good example. Even if in the US there is no risk of getting polio (other than from the pink live virus vaccine that they used to give kids), traveling abroad puts you at risk. Have you forgotten the outbreak in the 80s in England?

HPV is different. You can travel all you want and will not be infected unless you have intimate contact with an infected person.

HPV is first of all not spread that easily, when you do get infected you will most likely clear the virus on your own, and if you are infected and do not clear the virus, you will not necessarily develop cervical cancer. The vaccine's risks are not worth the limited benefits of a vaccine that protects against a virus that for most people is not something they need to worry about.


The manufacturer knows that most parents are opting not to have this vaccine for their kids, and that may be why they lobbied the legislature to make gardasil mandatory for school age children even though it is not something that can be spread in the classroom by casual contact. Their job is to make money. Our job as parents is to evaluate the data and decline unnecessary vaccines that may harm our kids and may offer little or no benefit.



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