A new Canadian study has found no increased risk of autoimmune disorders in girls who received quadrivalent human papillomavirus (HPV4) vaccination, adding to the body of evidence for the safety of the vaccine.
The study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, sought to determine whether the HPV4 vaccination triggered autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, type 1 diabetes, Bell’s palsy, optic neuritis and Graves’ disease.
Researchers looked at data on 290,939 girls aged 12 to 17 years in Ontario, Canada, who were eligible for vaccination between 2007 and 2013. Of the total 180,819 girls who received at least one dose of the HPV4 (Gardasil) vaccine in school-based clinics, there were 681 diagnosed cases of autoimmune disorders between one week and two months after vaccination. The rate is consistent with the general rate of diagnosed cases in this age group.
HPV4 vaccination was not associated with increased risk of developing an autoimmune disorder (adjusted rate ratio 1.12; 95% CI 0.85-1.47). The association was independent of a girl’s history of immune-mediated diseases (P=.4)
"These findings add to the body of evidence on the safety of the HPV4 vaccine and should reassure parents and health care providers," the study authors said study.