4_Sex, Drugs, and Politics - Casper and Carpenter

4_Sex, Drugs, and Politics - Casper and Carpenter - Sex...

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Sex, drugs, politics and the HPV vaccine 889 © 2008 The Authors Journal compilation © 2008 Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness/Blackwell Publishing Ltd which produce 90 per cent of genital warts. Cervarix is formulated with AS04, an adjuvant intended to strengthen and prolong immune system response (GlaxoSmithKline 2007). Clinical trials indicate that Cervarix may also protect against HPV-45 and HPV-31, the third and fourth most common cancer-causing strains (Harper et al. 2006). Both vaccines are administered by injection in three doses, Gardasil at 0, 2 and 6 months, and Cervarix at 0, 1 and 6 months. A three-shot course of Gardasil costs about US$360, and Cervarix is expected to be comparably priced. Side effects are generally minor: localised itching and swelling, and systemic dizziness, fever, and nausea (Wheeler 2007). As of May 2007, 136 ‘serious adverse reactions’ to Gardasil had been recorded, including seizures, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, miscarriages or fetal abnormalities, and three deaths (which the
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