1.02.2008

watch this


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XK97CHQZhq0













17 {comments}:

danielle said...

A few things:

He states that HPV infections are usually self-limiting. This is absolutely true. The problem is that sometimes they aren't and when the virus is not cleared by the immune system it can cause cancer several years later.

A VERY high percentage of HPV infections do not cause cervical cancer. Also true. As stated above, many, many infections are cleared, but it is the highly virulent strains when not cleared that cause cancer.

The Guardisil vaccine does not in any way cause cervical cancer. A negative statistical correlation can occur in a study due to confounding factors or lack of controls for appropriate factors. I have not read this study so I cannot comment specifically on why the authors report a negative correlation. But I am sure that no reputable physician or scientist would agree that the vaccine causes cancer. It is not even likely that this is the conclusion the study comes to with this statistic. I say this because the man in this video is completely misleading about the conclusions of the JAMA article. I took a look at this one myself. He states that the JAMA authors have found that the vaccine has no effect on the rate of progression of viral clearance or the progression of cervical cancer. The JAMA study was limited to women who were already infected with HPV at the time they received the vaccine. The vaccine, like every other vaccine we receive, is not effective against established infection. Vaccines expose our immune systems to viral proteins that make it possible for our bodies to mount an immune response when we are exposed to the actual virus and prevent infection.

HPV vaccines have been suggested for boys not because anyone thinks that a boy has a cervix. Males spread the virus. If boys receive the vaccine and then cannot be infected with it, they cannot then spread it to females.

This guy has his science wrong and I don't know why he is determined to demonize the drug companies in a conspiracy theory.

Stef said...

Thanks Danielle. I was especially hoping you would comment on this one. Your info was very helpful. I liked some of what he had to say, but I'm leery of anyone who wants to hate on Dr's and drug companies (though I agree they're not all on the up and up).

Thanks for your input

Gina said...

Question for Danielle, if you know...I've heard that there are several strains of HPV, very much like the flu. Also like the flu, the producers of HPV can only pick through an educated guess the strain that will be related to cancer and make the vaccine from that. In which case, like the flu vaccine, the HPV vaccine cannot completely rule out the possiblity of getting cancer. Also, if HPV is usually shed from the body naturally, without much to do, if you happen to be the kind of body that does not shed the virus completely, in theory, wouldn't the vaccine make those same people more susceptible to having cancer in the long run as their bodies would naturally harbor more of the HPV itself? Any insight here?

Stef said...

Danielle should totally start charging us. ;)

danielle said...

There's a lot of misinformation out there and this stuff isn't rocket science. I'm really privledged to have rapid access to medical information and one of my greater interests is getting accurate health information to people outside the medical field.

Gina, to answer your question: Human Papilloma Virus, the virus that causes warts on the hands and feet, genital warts and cervical cancer, is a lot different from the influenza virus, in that, influenza mutates rapidly to evade the immune response. From year to year the strains mutate, mostly in animals such as birds, and then spread to humans. HPV does not change from year to year. There are two strains, 16 and 18, that are highly virulent and thought to cause most cervical cancers. The other strains mostly cause genital warts. Guardisil immunizes against 16 and 18 and several other more benign strains.

HPV is not exactly shed from the body naturally. You do have to be exposed to HPV and your skin or cervix epithelium actively infected to shed viral particles. Whether or not you will have an infection following exposure is a bit random. Kind of like whether or not you will contract a cold virus when in a room full of coughy sneezy people. And as with a common cold, if infected, the body is often able to clear the virus rather rapidly. If the immune system is not able clear an HPV infection, the virus will continue to thrive in the cervical epithelium and eventually cause the cells to transform into a cancerous cell type.

There isn't any reason that a person who is less likely to clear HPV infection would be more susceptible to cancer having received the vaccine. But I'm really curious as to your rationale on that question. Maybe I can clear something up about how the vaccine works? In a nutshell, Guardisil is protein made in a lab that is identical to a surface protein of the virus. This is the viral particle that our immune cells recognize. The viral proteins are benign and have no infectious properties but the immune cells still recognize them as foreign and then recruit another type of immune cell to "remember" the foreign protein. These are actually called "memory B cells." So now, when the virus enters the body, the memory B cells make antibodies which will attach to the virus and recruit "killer T cells." No really, that's what they're called.

I hope that was clear but I would love to answer any more questions you might have.

Gina said...

Your answer was very clear, Danielle, thank you for taking the time. Vaccines are a tough issue at best, and new ones even more so. With no long term use results there will be much to learn as more and more people use and react to the vaccine. I find it important to know all we can about these things, and sometimes, the medical information is not distributed to the public in its true and telling form. Cancer is scary to most people and I imagine that factor alone will have many more than willing to use this vaccine because of that factor alone. I don't have any girls, (But God willing I will some day) but I still want to know the ins and outs of this vaccine--who knows when the information will come in handy!

Gina said...

You know, I was thinking about it, and some of the reason why I'm not sold on this vaccine has to do with the message it gives our kids. You have a little girl and she reaches nine, so you tell her it's time to get this shot. "Why another shot mom?" "Well honey, you're reaching puberty soon, which means you'll be having sex soon, so we just want to protect you." Doesn't that seem at least a bit obsurd? I mean, shouldn't we be teaching our kids about sex & STDs & abstinence instead of vaccinated them for STDs (which, is the long term efficacy even sufficient?)? I know it may be a bit presumptious to believe that just b/c we teach abstinence our kids will *actually* abstain, but I think it's an important goal to be up front & honest with them & to teach them what God intended sex to be--for married couples. Kids need to learn that sex has consequences--especially sex outside of marriage & with multiple partners. Some of those consequences are diseases that can cause death. Maybe I'm too old fashioned or have a rosey view on this, but it seems better to educate than vaccinate in this regard.

Stef said...

I'm with you on that one, Gina. If this stuff can only be transmitted sexually, then I'll pass on it. If my daughter(s) reach 18+ and are living a sort of lifestyle where they decide they need the shot, then they can chose to get it on their own accord.

Erin said...

HPV being an STD, is why I don't like this vaccine, also. I don't like the idea of medically guarding yourself or your children ahead of time, in order that you can sin freely. I guess I would be okay with a vaccine of such nature for someone marrying a person who is already infected. But, getting a shot as preparation for the unknowns of sleeping around.... I don't think so.

danielle said...

Right, HPV is sexually transmitted. Like Erin said, there would certainly be reason for a virgin who waited for marriage to get this vaccine if her husband had slept with anyone else. That's the thing. Even if a girl waits until marriage she can still become infected by her husband. My devout Catholic grandmother had cervical cancer. Fair? No. Reality? Yes.

I completely understand the irony of teaching your daughter abstinence and then vaccinating her for an STD. I guess the question is, do we leave our daughters vulnerable as a punishment for pre-marital sex? Or for marrying someone who cheats on her? While the vaccine might be something to wait on until marriage for some women--the vaccine definitely has proven efficacy through age 25, and I am convinced well beyond--on a public health scale this vaccine will save lives.

Jodi said...

But you don't have to elaborate on WHY you are giving the shot. "Why another shot mom?" "It's just another shot the doctor recommends to keep you healthy honey."

I will do it for my daughter just as soon as I can - you never know - what if, God forbid, she were raped, and the consequence down the road, on top of the horrendous experience, is HPV and cancer? I think my job as a parent is to protect them as much as I possibly can.

Stef said...

Okay, after reading Jodi's comment, I'd have to say I'm more leaning on agreeing with her. I hadn't thought of that alternative. One of my issues right now is just wondering how safe the shot is. Its quite new and unfortunately I don't trust them that much. :-\
I am going to do more research and talk to Ethan's doctor (who we love so much) and come to a conclusion then.

Stef said...

Okay, after reading Jodi's comment, I'd have to say I'm more leaning on agreeing with her. I hadn't thought of that alternative. One of my issues right now is just wondering how safe the shot is. Its quite new and unfortunately I don't trust them that much. :-\
I am going to do more research and talk to Ethan's doctor (who we love so much) and come to a conclusion then.

Erin said...

HPV being an STD, is why I don't like this vaccine, also. I don't like the idea of medically guarding yourself or your children ahead of time, in order that you can sin freely. I guess I would be okay with a vaccine of such nature for someone marrying a person who is already infected. But, getting a shot as preparation for the unknowns of sleeping around.... I don't think so.

Jodi said...

But you don't have to elaborate on WHY you are giving the shot. "Why another shot mom?" "It's just another shot the doctor recommends to keep you healthy honey."

I will do it for my daughter just as soon as I can - you never know - what if, God forbid, she were raped, and the consequence down the road, on top of the horrendous experience, is HPV and cancer? I think my job as a parent is to protect them as much as I possibly can.

danielle said...

Right, HPV is sexually transmitted. Like Erin said, there would certainly be reason for a virgin who waited for marriage to get this vaccine if her husband had slept with anyone else. That's the thing. Even if a girl waits until marriage she can still become infected by her husband. My devout Catholic grandmother had cervical cancer. Fair? No. Reality? Yes.

I completely understand the irony of teaching your daughter abstinence and then vaccinating her for an STD. I guess the question is, do we leave our daughters vulnerable as a punishment for pre-marital sex? Or for marrying someone who cheats on her? While the vaccine might be something to wait on until marriage for some women--the vaccine definitely has proven efficacy through age 25, and I am convinced well beyond--on a public health scale this vaccine will save lives.

danielle said...

There's a lot of misinformation out there and this stuff isn't rocket science. I'm really privledged to have rapid access to medical information and one of my greater interests is getting accurate health information to people outside the medical field.

Gina, to answer your question: Human Papilloma Virus, the virus that causes warts on the hands and feet, genital warts and cervical cancer, is a lot different from the influenza virus, in that, influenza mutates rapidly to evade the immune response. From year to year the strains mutate, mostly in animals such as birds, and then spread to humans. HPV does not change from year to year. There are two strains, 16 and 18, that are highly virulent and thought to cause most cervical cancers. The other strains mostly cause genital warts. Guardisil immunizes against 16 and 18 and several other more benign strains.

HPV is not exactly shed from the body naturally. You do have to be exposed to HPV and your skin or cervix epithelium actively infected to shed viral particles. Whether or not you will have an infection following exposure is a bit random. Kind of like whether or not you will contract a cold virus when in a room full of coughy sneezy people. And as with a common cold, if infected, the body is often able to clear the virus rather rapidly. If the immune system is not able clear an HPV infection, the virus will continue to thrive in the cervical epithelium and eventually cause the cells to transform into a cancerous cell type.

There isn't any reason that a person who is less likely to clear HPV infection would be more susceptible to cancer having received the vaccine. But I'm really curious as to your rationale on that question. Maybe I can clear something up about how the vaccine works? In a nutshell, Guardisil is protein made in a lab that is identical to a surface protein of the virus. This is the viral particle that our immune cells recognize. The viral proteins are benign and have no infectious properties but the immune cells still recognize them as foreign and then recruit another type of immune cell to "remember" the foreign protein. These are actually called "memory B cells." So now, when the virus enters the body, the memory B cells make antibodies which will attach to the virus and recruit "killer T cells." No really, that's what they're called.

I hope that was clear but I would love to answer any more questions you might have.

 

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