Girl’s ill-health to put vaccines in spotlight

by Gazette Reporter

A LOCAL girl, who has been battling a string of debilitating illnesses which her mother believes to be a direct result of the HPV Gardasil vaccination, is to take part in a television documentary on the subject.
The vaccination in question is to prevent cervical cancer, and 17-year-old Kelly Power from Swords received her first vaccination when she was 12 years old, and another two the following year.
There is still no medical evidence to link Kelly’s condition with Gardasil; however, its use has been discontinued in Denmark and is the subject of countless legal actions in the US, Australia and in Ireland.
Thousands of girls worldwide are suffering similar symptoms, in similar circumstances, and strongly believe that it is as a direct result of taking the HPV vaccine Gardasil.
Speaking to The Gazette, Kelly said she began to feel symptoms of illness straight away: “From the start I was getting chronic headaches, feeling pain around my body, and chronic fatigue. I was just constantly tired all the time, trying to sleep all the time, and it just wasn’t getting any better.”
In the years since she first got the vaccine, she has contracted a number of different illnesses.
She said: “I have an underactive thyroid disease [hypothyroidism], a chronic pain disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme Carditis – which is affecting my heart- and chronic headaches. It’s just like a never ending list of things.”
She added that she has recently begun to develop discolouration, coldness and tingling in her fingertips, which are symptoms of Raynaud’s Disease.
Kelly has also been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease and was given epidurals to stop the pain. She said this has had a huge impact on her life, preventing her from doing many of the things she once loved to do.
“Sports, Gaelic, soccer, basketball … In school, I had an amazing attendance up to then [the vaccines], [but] I had to leave school; I’m out of school two or three years now,” she said.
Her mother, Kiva Murphy, is one of a number of parents of girls in the same situation as Kelly, who have founded the advocacy group, Reactions and Effects of Gardasil Resulting in Extreme Trauma (REGRET).
Speaking to The Gazette, she said the patient information leaflet on Gardasil states that these symptoms were noted during trials of the vaccine. However, she said this information was not provided to parents.
She said: “The HSE did not put it into the bag of information they gave us with the consent form. There was no chance of them saying these life-changing effects could happen.”
A spokesperson from the Department of Health said the benefits of HPV vaccines continue to outweigh the known side effects.
The spokesperson said: “The European Medicines Agency has advised healthcare professionals that available data does not warrant any change to the use of HPV vaccines.
“The agency has also commenced a review of the HPV vaccine ‘to further clarify aspects of their safety profile’, although the agency points out that this review ‘does not question that the benefits of HPV vaccines outweigh their risks’. Ireland is participating in the review.”
The issue is the subject of a TV3 documentary, in which Kelly will feature: Cervical Vaccine: Is It Safe?. The programme airs on Monday, December 14 at 10pm on TV3.

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