Every vaccine on the market carries a risk for some people. Merck’s HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccine, Gardasil® is marketed as a means to prevent cervical cancer in girls and anal cancer in boys. Although many genotypes of HPV have been associated with cancer, none have been proven to cause cancer. Scientists have not yet been able to determine exactly what causes normal cells to transform into cancerous cells.
It is much the same for adverse events experienced after vaccination with Gardasil. No one has been able to prove Gardasil causes new medical conditions such as nerve damage, but the association is clearly there. To date, there have been 21,292 adverse events reported to VAERS after HPV vaccinations – many of these reports include cases of nerve damage.
To understand the potential consequences of nerve damage, one needs a basic understanding of the nervous system. The nervous system is comprised of the brain, spinal cord and nerves throughout your body called peripheral nerves. These three components are responsible for everything that occurs in your body. Consequently, nerve damage can take on many forms. There are literally hundreds of disorders, diseases and syndromes associated with nerve damage.
The following list is but a few of the cases of nerve damage reported VAERS after injections of the HPV vaccine Gardasil®:
- Guillain-Barré Syndrome – usually begins with symptoms similar to CIPD (below), gradually spreading to the arms and upper body sometimes resulting in total paralysis, or death.
- CIDP – Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy – a progressive weakness and impaired feeling in the arms or legs, characterized by tingling or numbness beginning in the fingers and toes, loss of deep tendon reflexes, fatigue and abnormal sensations.
- ADEM – Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis – Symptoms, which vary among individuals, may include headache, delirium, lethargy, coma, seizures, stiff neck, fever, ataxia, optic neuritis, transverse myelitis, vomiting, and weight loss. Other symptoms may include monoparesis (paralysis of a single limb) or hemiplegia (paralysis on one side of the body).
- MS – Multiple Sclerosis – caused by damage to the nerves in the central nervous system (CNS), which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. Symptoms may be mild, such as numbness in the limbs, or severe, such as paralysis or loss of vision. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS are unpredictable and vary from one person to another.
- Bell’s Palsy Syndrome – resulting from damage to the nerves of the face, resulting in excruciating pain, muscle spasms and facial contortions. It can lead to total facial paralysis.
- Epilepsy – a brain disorder involving repeated spontaneous seizures of any type. Seizures (convulsions) are episodes of disturbed brain function that cause changes in attention or behavior. They are caused by abnormally excited electrical signals in the brain.
- Encephalitis – inflammation of the brain. Inflammation changes the normal blood flow in the brain. This can cause symptoms such as confusion, a fever, a bad headache, and a stiff neck. Sometimes it leads to symptoms like seizures and personality changes.
One of the problems with nerve damage is the wide variety of symptoms that may present themselves. Frequently conditions related to nerve damage are misdiagnosed, especially when vaccines are involved. Many physicians are reluctant to consider the fact that vaccines may be related to recent injections of vaccines, such as Gardasil®. They have been trained that vaccines are safe and effective.
Medical consumers must be aware of the definition of adverse event in relation to HPV vaccines. According to the FDA, an adverse event is “any new medical condition following vaccination.”
It is your responsibility to pay attention to these new medical conditions and report them to your doctor the moment they appear serious. If your doctor refuses to listen and examine the possibility that this new condition may be vaccine-related, perhaps it is time for a second opinion.