Talk:Gardasil/draft

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Here's the version of the article I would propose. I'm open to suggestions.

Gardasil is a vaccine that protects girls and women from HPV infection. Campaigns to require mandatory vaccination have attracted outcry, particularly from conservatives.[1]

Gardasil, protects against types 6, 11, 16 and 18 of the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is a sexually transmitted disease that is endemic among sexually active people, with 80% of those who have sex with more than one partner carrying the disease, usually without any symptoms.[2] These strains of HPV have been associated with 70% of cervical cancer cases and may also play a role in the development of other types of cancer [3]. In June 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Gardasil based on the results of four separate studies which showed elevated antibody levels in recipients of the vaccine.[4] Although the study period was not long enough to see if cervical cancer would develop, the studies did show that the vaccine was 100% effective in preventing the pre-cancerous lesions and genital warts caused by HPV [5]

The HPV vaccine does not protect against any other sexually transmitted diseases. The vaccine is not recommended for use in pregnant women or girls.[6]


The long-term consequences of the HPV vaccine are unknown as there have not been any long-term studies. Children in the 9-year-old age group have been monitored for 18 months, and there have been no studies of possible longer-term risks of the vaccine. Between July 2006 and January 2007, there were 82 reports of adverse events filed with the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) following the receipt of the vaccine. Under clinical trial conditions, the reports of adverse or severe reactions were not any higher for those receiving the vaccine versus those receiving a placebo.

A study published February 28, 2007 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) [7] disclosed that about 26.8% of women are infected in their lifetime by the particular types of HPV (Types 6, 11, 16, 18) targeted by the vaccine.

Merck manufactures the HPV vaccine ("Gardasil") and sells it for $360 ($120 per shot in a three-shot series). Its package insert explains the limitations of the vaccine and describes its testing for safety and efficacy.[8]

Alternative means of protection against cervical cancer include abstinence (most effective) and barrier contraception which reduces the likelihood of exposure, but does not eliminate risk.[9] Early signs of cervical cancer can be detected via pap smear which is effective if done regularly, but only detects infection or precancerous changes. It does not prevent infection, but can prevent progression from infection to cancer. [10].

Proponents praise it as the first vaccine against cancer. Opponents say it will lead to sexual disinhibition.[11]

The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, the Texas Medical Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics do not support making this vaccine mandatory.

Dr. Jon Abramson, a member of the CDC's advisory committee on immunization practices, said in a report published in the Washington Times that "I told Merck my personal opinion that it shouldn't be mandated. And they heard it from other committee members."

Many girls who receive the shot say that it is the most painful of all injections they get, and that the vaccine itself burns, unlike the "other shots [that] tend to hurt only at the moment of the needle stick, and not after the vaccine plunges in." Many girls have been known to pass out from the pain, as indicated in the vaccination's package insert.[12][13]


  1. http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1206813,00.html
  2. http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/hnf/hnf_6403.htm
  3. [1]
  4. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5602a1.htm
  5. http://www.fda.gov/bbs/topics/NEWS/2006/NEW01385.html
  6. http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_pi.pdf
  7. http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/abstract/297/8/813
  8. http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_pi.pdf
  9. http://cdc.gov/STD/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm#reducerisk
  10. http://www.cdc.gov/std/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm#cancer
  11. The New Scientist in Britain quoted the Family Research Council's Bridget Maher warning that "giving the HPV vaccine to young women could be potentially harmful, because they may see it as a license to engage in premarital sex." Defusing the War Over the "Promiscuity" Vaccine - TIME
  12. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22492557/
  13. http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_pi.pdf
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