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Cervarix does not increase the risk of chronic fatigue syndrome, says MHRA

By News team

There is no evidence that GlaxoSmithKline’s Cervarix – the human papillomavirus vaccine – may cause chronic fatigue syndrome, according to the results of a study announced by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency this week.

More than two million young women aged between 12 and 18 years were given Cervarix as part of the Government’s HPV vaccination programme between September 2008 and September 2012. (It has since been replaced by Gardasil, supplied by Sanofi Pasteur MSD, due to commercial reasons.)

The MHRA analysed patient data from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink to compare the frequency of fatigue syndromes in young women before and after the start of the vaccination programme, and the risk following vaccination compared to other time periods. The study, published in the journal Vaccine, found no evidence of an increased risk of chronic fatigue syndrome in women after having the Cervarix vaccine.

Robert Music, chief executive of Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust, said: “Like all vaccines there are possible side effects to take into consideration, but these research findings by the MHRA are very positive and we encourage all those who are eligible to take up the vaccine.”

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2013.11127123

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