Row erupts on This Morning sofas as Melinda Messenger is accused of scare-mongering over her decision NOT to give her teenage daughter the HPV vaccine
- The HPV vaccine is routinely offered to 12-13 year-old girls to prevent cancer
- It protects against 2 types which make up 70% of cervical cancer cases in the UK
- Many women report severe side effects after having the vaccine administered
- But experts around the world are adamant this is untrue and deem it to be safe
- It's estimated around 400 lives could be saved each year by giving girls the jab
- While Dr Chris Steele and Dr Zoe said it is the 'safest drug there is on the market'
Melinda Messenger was accused of scare-mongering by This Morning's resident doctor after revealing that she won't be giving her teenage daughter the HPV vaccine.
A row erupted between the TV presenter and former glamour model, 45, and Dr Chris Steele after she expressed her concern about the link between the jab and a range of chronic illnesses.
Known side effects include headaches, fever and nausea, but experts around the world remain adamant there is no evidence to link the vaccine to anything stronger.
However, Dr Steele attacked her for making her decision to not give Evie, 13, the jab public as others parents could follow suit.
He said: 'What upsets me, Melinda, is that you've done this in the public domain. You could have done this privately. This will affect people.'
'You could have done this privately': Melinda Messenger was slammed on This Morning on Wednesday as she revealed why she WON'T give her daughter Evie, 13, the HPV vaccine
But furious Dr Chris said: 'What upsets me, Melinda, is that you've done this in the public domain. You could have done this privately. This will affect people'
Her appearance on the daytime show came just a month after she wrote a first-person piece for the MailOnline about why Evie has not been given the vaccine.
The HPV vaccine, Gardasil, is routinely offered to 12-13 year-old girls as part of the NHS' cervical cancer programme.
It is known to protect against two common types of HPV, which are responsible for more than 70 per cent of the cases in the UK.
The disease is believed to currently kill 1,000 people yearly in the UK, doctors estimate that around 400 lives are saved each year as a result of vaccinating girls before they become infected.
Viewers of the programme tweeted their disgust over Melinda's comments, calling the decision 'disgraceful'
Another user said 'Well done Melinda Messenger' for scaring girls into not having the vaccine
But some expressed their concerns over the vaccine, discussing the range of side effects it is known to cause
One Twitter user said that the side effects happen to 'so many girls' and that the link cannot just be a 'coincidence'
But many women report that they have developed chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) after having the vaccine.
Health authorities around the world, including the World Health Organization, have recently extensively reviewed the vaccine and have concluded it is safe.
Melinda said she had been approached by many who had been struck down with the condition and that she was unable to 'ignore it'.
However, she did say that she wasn't against the idea of immunisation in general. But she didn't want to rush into making a decision for daughter without finding out more.
Viewers of the programme tweeted their disgust over Melinda's comments, calling the decision 'disgraceful'.
But some expressed their concerns over the vaccine, discussing the range of side effects it is known to cause.
Concerned: Phillip Schofield revealed that both his daughters have had the vaccine and said even the contraceptive pill has a host of side effects
Debating the issue: The HPV vaccine, Gardasil and is routinely offered to 12-13 year-old girls and Melinda's daughter Evie, is aged 13
Melinda said: 'There are 300 cases in the UK of people being struck down with chronic illnesses after the vaccine. I've had email after email about this and I can't ignore it'
WHAT IS THE HPV VIRUS?
Human papilloma virus (HPV) is the name for a group of viruses that affect your skin and the moist membranes lining your body.
There are more than 100 types of HPV. Around 30 of which can affect the genital area. Genital HPV infections are common and highly contagious.
They are spread during sexual intercourse and skin-to-skin contact of the genital areas.
They can cause genital warts - the second most common sexually transmitted infection in England.
While it is also known to cause cervical cancer by creating an abnormal tissue growth.
Other types of HPV infection can cause minor problems, such as common skin warts and verrucas.
All girls aged 12-13 are offered a vaccination against HPV by the NHS to help protect them against cervical cancer.
Gardasil protects against two types of HPV, which are responsible for more than 70 per cent of cervical cancers in the UK.
Women aged 25-64 are offered cervical screening to check for abnormal cells in the cervix.
It's estimated that about 400 lives could be saved every year in the UK as a result of vaccinating girls before they are infected with HPV.
Source: NHS Choices
And Doctor Zoe added: 'There is nothing to support that the vaccination is linked to chronic disease. I strongly urge people to have the vaccine as it could save your life.
'In a year, these teenagers might still have had chronic illnesses, it's no surprise they may want to think there is a link. But they may have fallen ill anyway.'
She argued that she believed the reported side effects were not necessarily linked to the jabs.
Host Phillip Schofield said that both of his daughters have had the vaccine.
But a concerned Dr Chris said that there had been some concerns about This Morning covering the story.
He said: 'When the MMR vaccine came out. It was linked to autism and children died. I went through this with German measles as well.'
Melinda said she had read a piece on the vaccine, which most people don't see and she was alarmed by what she had read.
She said: 'It's a 28-page insert by parents which lists the adverse effects which can occur. It includes autoimmune disease, gastro and respiratory problems and even death.'
But Phillip rationalised: 'Well, there are a lot of things like that on the packets of the pill.'
Melinda replied: 'Yes, every drug has a side effect, but it's my role to protect my daughter against any serious side effects.'
Dr Zoe said: 'Yes, but these are all just reported links. None are proven. Millions of pounds have been spent on researching it. It is the safest drug we've had.'
Looking for answers: Dr Zoe said that no illnesses were proven to be linked to the vaccine, saying: ' Millions of pounds have been spent on research. It is the safest drug we've had'
Melinda followed up with: 'More research needs to be done'
Phillip concluded by asking both doctors if they would advise their patients to have the vaccine and they both said they 100 per cent would.
Melinda followed up with: 'More research needs to be done.'
Clearly aware that the subject matter was a controversial one, Melissa had tweeted about it the day before.
She said: 'Getting ready for 'this morning' tomorrow on itv, where I'm talking about the Hpv vaccine. Should be interesting! X'
A spokesperson for Public Health England said: 'The HPV vaccine is the most effective way for young girls and women to protect themselves against cervical cancer - the most common cancer among women under the age of 35.
'The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency is clear that the evidence does not support a link between HPV vaccination and any of the chronic illnesses it is being linked to.
'We would strongly urge any eligible teenagers, aged 12 to 13, not to be deterred from getting vaccinated at the right time because of any misleading information – delaying the vaccination reduces the protection given.
'This very effective vaccine could save their lives.'
Anticipation: Clearly aware that the subject matter was a controversial one, Melissa had tweeted about it the day before
Smiling: Melinda appeared in high spirits as she posed backstage in a fitted white dress with a colourful panel
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