Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thoughtful Tuesday: HPV

Here I dive into the world of current events.

Take a deep breath.

I have so many thoughts on this story about Michelle Bauchman and HPV.  Let me try and organize them.

1.  First off.  HPV.  Li'l Miss P will be getting it, I guess there's even a chance my boys might get it, although that seems a bit overboard.  You just never know, and if your daughter makes one mistake and then dies of cervical cancer... I mean, just get it.  HPV's really real, there's lots of good Christian women out there wtih it.  It's an STD and it can kill you, and at best it can make you get biopsies of your cervix which can cause a c-section.

2.  WHAT THE HECK?  She talked to ONE woman who said her daughter became retarded AFTER getting the vaccine.  I mean, you don't get it til' you're like a tween.!  The girl was perfectly normal and then whamo, she was retarded?  Plus, it's one person, and then she decides to spew it in a debate?  I'm just so tired of this.  I can't tell you how many phone calls I got from worried moms thinking their kids were going to get Autism since they got the MMR.  And now to find out it was all really poorly done and not true in the SLIGHTEST?  Grrr.... and to think of the kids that have died because they didn't get it.  Plus, that whole pertussis outbreak.  I don't think people get the whole heard immunity thing.  Anyway, I just get really bugged when people talk about vaccines with absolutely no knowledge.  I'm interested in these doctors offices that say if your child isn't getting shots you'll need to find a new pediatrician.  Hmm, I can't find a link to it.  But some pediatric offices are saying that if your child isn't immunized, you'll need to find a new provider.  It truly does put the rest of the population (especially newborns) at risk.  Also, if you strongly believe your child shouldn't get shots, you probably do need to find a pediatrician that agrees with you.  And those are getting more and more rare....

Soapbox done. :)


  1. Agreed.

    (Frankly, I think you can trace this back to a misunderstanding of science and peer-reviewed evidence.)

  2. i don't know what happened, you guys don't live in CA & i missed everything! grant it i moved 6 months ago & have been traveling like a maniac but i just wanted to say hi! & that i hope everything turned out great for you guys! you're one of the good ones.

    & can i just say i could not POSSIBLY agree more with you on this vaccine issue. my biggest rant as of late has been delayed schedule vaccinations where parents 'feel bad' giving their tiny babies shots of vaccines & so they put them on a delayed track & then expect the same results as the rest of us. sure, there must be NO logic or science behind the timing of these things. ugh! drives me bonkers.

  3. I'm more middle of the road on vaccines. My children are vaccinated, but I do wait a little longer to get some of them and spread it out more.

    Regarding HPV, I actually know a girl who got it and then spent over a year dealing with health issues and found she had Giullian-Barre. Which has been linked to HPV itself, and so the vaccine is suspected. I get why people are hesitant to do them (I am), but I don't get why we wouldn't do any at all. I don't know what I'll do about HPV. We'll see.

  4. You do mean she'll be getting the vaccine so as to NOT get HPV, right? ;)

    All this controversy drives me nuts. Parents who were concerned could OPT OUT. Making it standard with a parental choice to opt out sounds reasonable to me.

    If you want to argue about the use of executive order, have that debate. But to whine about how getting this shot will turn my daughter into a slut makes my blood boil.

    My daughters are getting it. Teaching abstinence doesn't mean ignoring contraceptives or pretending premarital sex doesn't ever happen. Our doctor likes to wait until they are 14, so we are due for some shots shortly at our house.

  5. I will also take a deep breath before diving in. I laid in bed last night thinking about this so I will try to make sense through the haze of sleepiness.

    I agree that presidential candidates are not a good source for medical advice. Otherwise, here is a counter view.

    1)The HPV vaccine has not been proven to prevent cervical cancer. Both Gardasil and Cervarix inserts show the clinical trials did not use reduction of cervical cancer as their gauge for effectiveness – only the reduction in precancerous lesions CIN 2/3. The clinical trials showed they reduced those precancerous lesions but it remains to be seen if they in the end will result in reduced cervical cancer rates.
    -You make a HUGE leap from a girl making one mistake to her dying of cervical cancer. (She is exposed to HPV, she gets HPV, the HPV leads to cervical cancer, she dies from cervical cancer.) When you multiply all those probabilities together, you come to a very small probability. Can it happen? Yes. Has it happened. Yes. Will it happen? Probably not. There are lots of things you can do to prevent cervical cancer other than the shot.
    -The shot also introduces the possibility of a reaction which could result in serious damage and death. Can it happen? Yes. Has it happened? Yes. Will it happen? Probably not. Vaccines wear off, so boosters would be needed creating additional risk. So the question becomes, as for all vaccines, does the benefit outweigh the risk? HPV is real. So is damage from the HPV vaccine.
    -In some cases, it is not possible to weigh the options because the risk isn't known. No studies were done to see if it was safe to give Hepatitis B vaccine to all babies at birth before it became policy. And several studies I have seen for safety use another vaccine as a placebo – which doesn't really tell us how safe the vaccine is, just safe it is relative to other vaccines.

    2)Dr. Wakefield's controversial paper was about bowel issues in autistic children, some of whose parents reported regression after the MMR shot. The paper made no claim of causation: it was the media that came away with the headline 'Vaccines cause autism.' The media also went into a frenzy when there were the allegations of Dr. Wakefield fabricating data, but not a peep when documents were found proving his data to be real.
    -Dr. Wakefield never recommended people stop vaccinating, but recommended the use of the individual vaccines instead of the combined MMR. This was because he did extensive research on the MMR and was appalled at the safety data and instead said to use the individual shots. Six months later the British government then withdrew the option for the individual shots, and so the choice became MMR or nothing.
    -Don't forget to be sad for those who died because they DID get the shot. Or be happy for all those who lived because they DIDN'T get the shot.
    -There are doctors of all opinions in this debate. As Lara pointed out, there is middle ground – something easily forgotten. Many support vaccination but they want SAFE vaccination- but any challenge to the status quo is met with brutal force. If a gas pedal of a certain car jams on the freeway and people are dying, there is a legitimate concern for safety. Does that make one anti-car? No, just pro-safe cars.
    -Parents want their children to live and to be healthy. Those who vaccinate believe this will help that goal, and those who don't, believe it won't or is not worth the risk. Not everyone who chooses not to vaccinate or delay vaccination is basing their decision solely on what a presidential candidate or celebrity says. Sadly some do. Don't take one person's word for it: do the research yourself then whatever you choose you are doing it with your eyes wide open. Educate before you vaccinate.

    Soap box done. :)


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