Published On: Fri, Sep 25th, 2015

Denmark drops Gardasil HPV Vaccine for Cervarix

nsnbc : Denmark drops the controversial Gardasil HPV vaccine and substitutes it with the Cervarix vaccine, informs the Danish Serum Institute. Gardasil has drawn international attention due to serious, so-called, side-effects. Cervarix has, however, not been without controversy either. 

Gardasil_HPV_SP_OCThe Gardasil vaccine, produced by pharma giant Merck and sold in Denmark via Sanofi Pasteur MSD has caused much controversy after being correlated to serious side-effects including death. Gardasil was given to all of the about 500.000 women in Denmark who were vaccinated against HPV.

The Danish Serum Institute informed the press that it has chosen to substitute Gardasil with Cervarix, within the framework of the Danish child vaccination program. Cervarix is not without controversy either.

In July 2015 the European Medicines Agency (EMA) called for a review of all human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines. The EMA stated that:

“The current review will look at available data with a focus on rare reports of two conditions: complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS, a chronic pain condition affecting the limbs) and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS, a condition where the heart rate increases abnormally after sitting or standing up, causing symptoms such as dizziness and fainting, as well as headache, chest pain and weakness).”

Among those vaccines under review were Gardasil/Silgard, Gardasil9, and Cervarix. Gardasil has been the most controversial among the HPV vaccines. The question is whether the high incidence of adverse effects is correlated to the widespread use of Gardasil and whether the change to Cervarix in Denmark or generally, will lead to an increase in incidence correlated to Cervarix.

Chief medical Doctor Jesper Mehlsen at Synkopecenter at Frederiksberg Hospital, Denmark expressed his opinion about the decision to substitute Gardasil with Cervarix, saying: ” I find it stange because Cervarix does not protect against genital worts. ” Mehlsen added that there is suspicion that Cervarix has no fewer side-effects than Gardasil, saying:

“It cannot be because of the side-effects which one claims don’t exist with Gardasil, because in the United Kingdom one has before experienced precisely the same side-effects with Cervarix”. 

GlaxoSmithKline will be tasked with delivering some 50.000 – 100.000 doses for the Danish market for the coming year. The Danish Serum Institute has, as far as nsnbc is aware, not yet delivered a detailed, publicly available report to explain its decision. One of the scandals related to Gardasil was that the manufacturer did not consider whether the vaccine could have adverse effects on women’s ovaries. There were several reports about women becoming infertile due to the vaccine.

CH/L – nsnbc 25.09.2015

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