Gardasil safety and the game of thrones

Gardasil Safety, Bishop Cullinan and Minister McGrath

The Gardasil vaccine continues to raise controversy. Recently in Ireland a junior health minister, Finian McGrath, and a bishop, Alphonsus Cullinan, have stuck their heads above the parapet – and pulpit – by publicly expressing their concerns about its safety. The result? To remain on their respective thrones they had to capitulate.

It’s an emotive issue which means reason is often omitted to the extent that many of the arguments resort to assumptions. McGrath was steadfast until the minister for health pulled him aside and tightened the thumb-screws, it seems, because the next morning McGrath capitulated like no other. Minister Harris had previously told “amateurs” to “butt out”. Parents beg to differ with such tyranny. Let’s look at some of those assumptions.

One comment meted out to both is that they are not “experts”. How do critics know they don’t have any expert or relevant knowledge? Are journalists expert on every topic that write about? The bishop said he was speaking out of concern for young people he had met.

It’s also assumed every GP, doctor and surgeon is an expert. This fallacious appeal to authority doesn’t stand.

It’s assumed by too many commentators that those who develop cervical cancer do so because of HPV; therefore the vaccine is necessary.

Likewise, it’s assumed HPV is the sole cause of cervical cancer. Many develop cervical cancer without being infected with HPV.

It’s assumed infection with HPV will always lead to cervical cancer. Many get infected with the virus but don’t subsequently develop cancer.

Assumptions are made about facts. When Gardasil was introduced we were told “60 people die each year from cervical cancer”, now we are being told it’s 90. Contradicting the HSE statistic (see below) that Gardasil will prevent 7 out of 10 cancers, Dr Elizabeth Brint, in her straw man argument (Irish Times letter) claims the figure to be 80%.

It’s assumed those claiming to be adversely affected are complaining of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome only. This forms part of Dr Brint’s argument. Leaving aside other supposed adverse effects, she does not take cognisance of the velocity of the onset of symptoms, their intensity or their duration – nor the causative factor. (This assumed “CFS reaction” means no-one has studied people claiming adverse reactions.)

She assumes the percentage of those with CFS who were vaccinated is the same as the populace generally, therefore Gardasil cannot be a cause.  

It’s assumed lifestyle has no bearing on the prevalence of the virus. Yet, ironically, only this week we read from the CDC in the US that sexually transmitted disease has increased to a record high. One source explains as follows:

“More than two million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis were reported in the United States in 2016, the highest number ever,” according to the report. The CDC announces this as a “record high.”

Chlamydia is up about 5% over 2015. Gonorrhea rates increased about 19%, early syphilis about 18%, and congenital syphilis was up nearly 28%.

Jonathan Mermin is the director of CDC’s National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention. He said, “Increases in STDs are a clear warning of a growing threat. STDs are a persistent enemy, growing in number, and outpacing our ability to respond.”…

These infections don’t come “from the wind”! And remember, medicine does not cure these infections in their entirety.

It’s assumed, by commentators, Gardasil covers all HPV viruses; it doesn’t – only a fraction of them. Even then, it’s estimated to prevent only 70% of cancers, according to the HSE information leaflet.

It’s assumed Gardasil is safe. It isn’t. (The same was said of Cervarix. Have you heard of it lately?) As one doctor said: “Even milk injected into the blood stream is toxic.” (Only last year the American College of Pediatricians made public new findings about Gardasil as a cause of premature ovarian failure: “It has recently come to the attention of the College that one of the recommended vaccines could possibly be associated with the very rare but serious condition of premature ovarian failure (POF), also known as premature menopause.” (link)

Logically it cannot be claimed a vaccine is safe as this claim is based on inductive logic.

Even clergy have condemned the bishop but were themselves ignorant of the fact that at least three countries have banned it and in March 2010 Spain withdrew a batch. The WHO provides a list of “reported” side-effects. (In a survey in the US, it was discovered only 10% of adverse reactions were reported by GPs.) The WHO records can be accessed at

What would those clergy say to all the Kenyan bishops who objected last year to vaccine programmes?:

They are also welcome to visit to learn a bit more about the source of vaccines. Likewise;

There is another assumption; the virus alone causes the cancer but the effects of medical intervention is never considered as playing a part in the development of cancer. The virus presents as wart-like excrescences on the skin. This is the body’s way of eliminating or containing the virus – to the exterior where it can do less harm. Conventional treatment consists in removing the growths with external treatment but ignores the internal virus. This, in medical terms, is suppressive and does more harm. If the patient is healthy they will throw the virus back on to the skin; if not so healthy, the virus will find another outlet on a deeper organ or higher up. Ask a surgeon to remove a patient’s common warts; he wont because he knows it doesn’t remove the virus causing them. So, doesn’t the same thinking hold for HPV warts? Think about it.

For more on Gardasil reactions visit HPV- Minister guards Gardasil reactions

Posted in Medicines, Philosophy of Medicine and tagged , , , , , , , , , .