May 31, 2007


Cervical cancer vaccine for all women could cut cases by half - study (Polly Curtis, June 1, 2007, The Guardian)

Vaccinating all women against cervical cancer could save hundreds of lives a year in the UK alone, according to the largest study of the vaccine. Government health advisers are considering whether to vaccinate pre-pubescent girls but the research published in Lancet suggests rates would be nearly halved if women in their 20s were offered a catch-up boost.

The study of more than 20,000 women around the world was sponsored by Merck which makes the vaccine Gardasil. The Lancet said the research was peer-reviewed and fast-tracked for publication because it was "clinically important".

The vaccine protects women against the common human papilloma virus (HPV) which causes 70% of cervical cancers. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation is due to meet in three weeks to continue their discussion of whether to recommend the vaccination.

The study finds that it protects against 99% of infections in women who have never had sex before vaccination and has a 44% protection rate in those who are sexually active and likely to have been exposed to an HPV virus. Around 1,000 women die a year in the UK from cervical cancer.

They conclude: "The results of this ... HPV vaccine programme provide strong evidence that implementation of HPV vaccination campaigns in pre-adolescent girls and young adult women will reduce rates of cervical cancer worldwide."

If it was the Commies who tricked us into fluoridation, presmably this is an Islamicist ploy?

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 31, 2007 7:27 PM

To argue that a non-infectious disease requires universal vaccination is a bit perverse, isn't it? If an AIDS vaccine is ever developed, it will surely become mandatory, even though in the US the odds of contracting the disease are exactly zero for the vast majority of the population. So there will be a huge waste of effort and resources mostly to prove a political point--pretending that AIDS is a threat to everyone equally, rather than a very specific subset of the population.

When it comes down to it, I have no overwhelming opposition to this vaccine, but I do have a problem with pretending that "the research [or the move to make this vaccine mandatory' was peer-reviewed and fast-tracked for publication because it was 'clinically important'" because we all know that that's just plain nonsense, and is an insult to our intelligence.

Posted by: b at June 1, 2007 10:38 AM

No, it's the pharmaceutical companies who pushed it. The same people who brought us ED and RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome).

Posted by: ted welter at June 1, 2007 10:53 AM

-- peer-reviewed --

There's that phrase again, just like AGW, articles have been peer-reviewed.

Posted by: Sandy P at June 1, 2007 10:56 AM

Few of us would end up with goiters, but we iodize everyone's salt.

Posted by: oj at June 1, 2007 2:43 PM

And because goiters can't be transmitted from person to person, you can eat as much or as little salt of whatver sort you like.

Posted by: b at June 1, 2007 4:34 PM

Don't forget irritable bowel syndrome.

Tetanus isn't contagious, either.

Posted by: ratbert at June 2, 2007 12:00 AM