Disinformation about HPV vaccination spreads on Pepper TV

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Reading Time: 4 minutes


On April 23, a video-address by the presenter and the founder of “Eurasian Choice”, Archil Chkoidze, was aired in the program of the Internet TV “Pepper TV” broadcasted live on Facebook. Mariam Zhorzholiani invited by Chkoidze to the program called “Pharmaceutical Mafia” was introduced by him as a doctor, who also has worked at the Hospital for Infectious Diseases. In the video, Chkoidze and Zhorzholiani talked about the increased prices of medicines, as well as about vaccines. According to Mariam Zhorzholiani, Georgia is undergoing great experiments, while the HPV vaccine is a biological weapon. She also claimed that Bill Gates and his wife traveled around African, as well as other countries, including India, where 150 thousand people were vaccinated, and all vaccinated girls are childless, while 15 thousand died.


Mariam Zhorzholiani’s claim, as if vaccination of 150 thousand people against HPV in India has led to infertility of girls participating in the campaign, while 15 thousand have died, is unfounded. In fact, about 24 thousand girls have been immunized with the HPV vaccine in India, while a study of the 7 deaths after vaccination have not established any link between vaccination and death. It is also wrong to assume that HPV vaccine causes infertility.

According to the scientific journal Nature, cervical cancer caused by HPV is the second most common cancer in women, after breast cancer. 500 000 new cases and about 250 000 deaths of this disease are recorded every year. This includes about 134 000 new cases and 73 000 deaths recorded in India.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first HPV vaccine, Gardasil, in 2006. In 2008, India approved two HPV vaccines: the vaccine produced by Merck and the Cervarix. Both were authorised for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

What actually happened in India? 

According to Politifact, an anti-vaccination blog tied with Bill Gates the deaths of several girls who participated in testing of the HPV vaccine in India. In fact, a full medical investigation established that causes of death for girls were totally unrelated to the vaccine: of the 7 cases, two were poisoned by insecticide, two died of malaria, one was bitten by a poisonous snake, one of them drowned, and one died from a disease that, according to physicians, was not linked to HPV. It should be noted that the vaccination began in 2009 and lasted until March 2010, and about 24 000 girls between the ages of 10 and 14 had been vaccinated. In addition to India, the campaign, funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has been carried out in Peru, Uganda, and Vietnam. The vaccination program was ceased by Indian government, after activists opposed the use of the vaccine following the deaths of seven vaccinated girls. An inquiry by the government of India concluded that the deaths were not associated with vaccination.

According to the World Health Organization, activities, that are carried out in developing countries and are funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, represent a complex and coordinated strategy aimed at making HPV vaccines available, acceptable, and affordable to those, who most need them.

Safety and benefits of the HPV vaccine 

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 12 years of monitoring and research have shown that HPV vaccine is safe. Before the authorisation, each vaccine (Gardasil 9, Gardasil and Cervarix) went through years of testing on safety. It is noteworthy that since the vaccines were licensed, more than 120 million doses have been distributed in the USA as of April 2019. Recent data continue to show that the vaccine is safe and effective, while adverse events are mild.

The 2017 report by the University of Adelaide regarding serious adverse events associated with HPV vaccine is available on the website of the World Health Organization. According to the report, with regard to Gardasil, none of the deaths were related to the vaccine. Two studies in the Cervarix TM trials, reporting deaths, identified the following causes of death: suicide, car accident, assault, cancer, Crohn’s disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, HIV-related disease, and acute myocardial infarction.

According to the information of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, no evidence suggests that HPV vaccines cause problems related to the women’s reproductive health. The WHO Global Advisory Committee on vaccine safety has also studied the association between infertility and HPV vaccine. It concluded that based on the available data, no association between vaccination and infertility was found.

It is remarkable that HPV vaccine reduces the risk of developing HPV infections and cervical cancer. Among teenage girls in the USA, infections with HPV types that cause most HPV cancers and genital warts, have dropped by 86 %. Among young adult women such infections have dropped by 71 %.

As for the idea expressed by Zhorzholiani on biological weapons, Myth Detector has published material stating that existence of a biological weapon targeting specific ethnic groups belongs to genre of science fiction. By this time, there is no officially confirmed report on any state possessing such weapon. All scientific articles and studies concering this matter, are theoretical and are based only on assumptions and predictions.

The article has been written in the framework of Facebook’s fact-checking program. You can read more about the restrictions that Facebook may impose based on this article via this link. You can find information about appealing or editing our assessment via this link.

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Violation: Disinformation
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