Merck and the FDA have expanded the warnings for Gardasil, the cervical cancer vaccine.
The new warning - added to the package insert and to an information sheet given to patients - was approved June 12 by the FDA, which states in documents on its Web site that the updated information "reflect reports received" after the vaccine went on the market in 2006.
Through June 10, medical professionals and others reported to a government database 8,864 instances of health problems, including fainting, numbness, seizures and paralysis, a study released June 30 by the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch shows. The database is shared by the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As many as 18 deaths were reported, the study found.
As I stated last year, my objection to Gardasil was the mandate by Texas Governor Rick Perry that all girls from 9 to 17 be vaccinated. That concern was twofold: that the government shouldn't be requiring parents to vaccinate their children for such diseases, and because the vaccine had not been tested long enough. It appears that the rush to bring this product to market has resulted in a variety of unexpected consequences. But remember, the only reason you wouldn't want your daughter to get this risky vaccine is because you want her to die of cervical cancer (according to Amanda Marcotte).