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October 25, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Despite Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann's recent charge that the HPV vaccine can cause "mental retardation," ongoing safety studies on the vaccine reveal no surprises, health officials said Tuesday. "We have no evidence" that HPV vaccination causes mental retardation, said Dr. Eileen Dunne, an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at a hearing of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, a panel that advises the CDC. The committee voted 13-0 to recommend routine human papillomavirus vaccination for boys ages 11 and 12. The vote included a review of the safety of the vaccine, which has been in use among girls in the United States since 2006.
October 25, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
The vaccine that protects against a sexually transmitted, human papilloma virus, should be routinely recommended to boys ages 11 and 12, a government advisory committee said Tuesday. The HPV vaccine is already advised for routine use in girls ages 11 to 12 to prevent cervical cancer. But a panel of health experts said that new data on the Gardasil vaccine's ability to curb the risk of anal cancer, particular among gay men, warrants adding boys to the list of people who should get the three-dose vaccine.
October 25, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times
A vaccine that protects against the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus should be routinely given to boys ages 11 and 12 to prevent anal cancer, a government advisory committee has decided. Though many parents may not wish to contemplate the future sex lives of their pre-adolescent children, vaccinating them young is the best way to avoid the risk of the cancer-causing virus, experts said Tuesday. The recommendation is sure to ignite further debate among the Republican presidential candidates who have focused intently on whether the controversial vaccine, called Gardasil, is appropriate for girls — who receive it for prevention of cervical cancer — let alone for boys.
October 19, 2011 | By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times / for the Booster Shots blog
An independent federal panel and several other leading medical groups are proposing new guidelines for cervical cancer screening -- in the same month that the federal panel made news by recommending against routine PSA tests to screen for prostate cancer. Among the recommendations: that women over age 21 should undergo Pap smears to test for cervical cancer only once every three years, according to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. This syncs somewhat with a new set of proposed guidelines from the American Cancer Society, the American Society for Clinical Pathology and the American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology, also released Wednesday.
September 16, 2011 | By Seema Mehta
Michele Bachmann, struggling to regain her footing in the GOP presidential contest, Friday assailed rival Rick Perry, saying he abused his power as governor of Texas and rewarded political donors in a manner similar to President Obama. "It's wrong to abuse executive authority with unilateral action, and of course the governor of Texas admitted as much that he made a mistake," Bachmann said, speaking to reporters after holding a rally in Costa Mesa. "People don't want a president or a governor making decisions based on political connections.
September 14, 2011
As GOP presidential candidates tussle over the latest issue to split the field — oddly enough, it's the rather obscure question of whether states should mandate vaccinating girls against a sexually transmitted virus — it's hard to tell which one ends up looking worst. But our vote goes to Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, whose rumor-mongering rampage against a safe and effective vaccine could discourage parents from protecting their daughters against cancer. During Monday's debate, Bachmann and former Sen. Rick Santorum lashed out at Texas Gov. Rick Perry over his 2007 executive order that Texas schoolgirls had to be vaccinated against human papillomavirus (the order was later overturned by the state legislature)
September 13, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
The HPV vaccine, which protects women against the human papilloma virus, is in the news once again, thanks to the recent GOP debate in which presidential candidate Michele Bachmann criticized Texas Gov. Rick Perry's proposed mandate of the vaccine and called it "...what potentially could be a very dangerous drug. " But that's not how most mainstream medical organizations in the U.S. see the HPV vaccine, approved in 2006 to prevent the spread of the virus, which can cause genital warts and may lead to cervical cancer.
September 13, 2011 | By James Oliphant, Washington Bureau
A reinvigorated Michele Bachmann continued her assault on Rick Perry on Tuesday morning, accusing the Texas governor and rival GOP presidential candidate of “crony capitalism” in connection with his state's program requiring the vaccination of young girls against human papillomavirus. She had some help from Sarah Palin, who told Fox News that she supported Bachmann's efforts Bachmann's criticism of Perry on Monday night at the CNN/Tea Party Express GOP presidential debate provided one of the debate's true fiery moments.
September 13, 2011 | By Paul West, Washington Bureau
A 2007 executive order by Texas Gov. Rick Perry has become the latest post-debate headache for the Republican presidential front-runner, who was accused of "crony capitalism" Tuesday by Rep. Michele Bachmann. The fight over requiring vaccinations for young girls — which surfaced in Monday's Florida debate — involved government prerogatives and cancer. But it also had a strong moral subtext: Bachmann and other social conservatives objected to forcible inoculations against a disease spread by sexual activity, while Perry defended himself with the language of the antiabortion movement.
September 13, 2011 | By Melanie Mason
Rep. Michele Bachmann's new line of attack against GOP frontrunner Gov. Rick Perry -- launched Monday night at the CNN/Tea Party Express debate and continued on Tuesday's morning talk shows -- pins the Texas governor's ties to a pharmaceutical giant as the reason for his controversial decision to require the HPV vaccine for Texas schoolgirls. “The drug company gave thousands of dollars in political donations to the governor, and this is just flat-out wrong,” Bachmann asserted in Monday night's debate.
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