On July 30, a healthy 12-year-old girl named Meredith Prohaska from Waukesha, Wisconsin, died after being injected with Gardasil, a vaccine for human papillomavirus, or HPV. Her mother Rebecca, is sure that the vaccine caused her daughter's unexpected death.
Meredith was a healthy girl who was active in sports, such as swimming and basketball. She had asthma and had an inhaler with her at all times. Aside from a broken pinkie from playing sports and an eye infection when she was 3-years-old, she never had any reason to go to the hospital.
On the morning of July 30, her mother brought her to the doctor for a routine check-up, and she also got a vaccine shot. Afterwards, she felt sleepy. Rebecca said that she had to repeatedly wake up her daughter just so she can stay up throughout the day.
Later in the afternoon, Rebecca went to get some groceries and returned to her home 30 minutes later to find Meredith unconscious on the floor. Rebecca also saw that Meredith had vomited. Being an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician), Rebecca gave her daughter CPR and then called 911. However, it was too late, and Meredith was dead upon arrival to the hospital.
Meredith had two younger siblings, Margaret, 6, and Patrick, 9. Rebecca had to make sure that Meredith's cause of death was not affecting her other children, so she brought them to the doctor. The results showed that both children were healthy. Rebecca is now wondering whether Gardasil was responsible for her daughter's death, but so far, there is no evidence to support her claim.
The investigation into Meredith's death is still ongoing. Waukesha Captain Ron Oremus said that they won't stop until they find what caused the little girl's death, Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reported.
"There is no indication of wrongdoing, but the cause of death has not been determined. That is something we rely on the medical examiner's office to do. Until that determination is made, we won't close the case."
Dr. Geoffrey Swain, a professor and doctor at the Milwaukee Health Department, says that the HPV vaccine's risks are outweighed by the benefits.
"Vaccines in general and the HPV vaccine in particular, very, very safe. It's a very safe vaccine and very effective."
Swain also said that the serious side effects of the vaccine are "very, very rare," and that they are one in a million, Fox reported.
[Image via Nature's Fare]