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My stomach heaved so hard I felt like my insides were coming loose. My left side, which was swelled out in a hard knot, felt as though I was being squeezed to death. It was the fourth time that day I had been to the bathroom to throw up everything I had on my stomach, which wasn't very much.
There is a lot of controversy over the new vaccination "Gardasil®" that prevents women from contracting human papillomavirus (HPV). Many mothers don't want to vaccinate their daughters because they believe approving a vaccination that prevents a sexually transmitted disease is the same as giving the go-ahead for their daughter to engage in unprotected sex. If this vaccine prevented brain tumors or bone cancer, the controversy would be limited to the safety of the drug itself, which can be proven over time.
I am writing this article because I searched the web tirelessly for someone, somewhere who could relate to what I was going through in the months that I dealt with HPV and Stage 0 Cervical Cancer. Although I had almost no threat to my life, the raw emotion, terror, and desperate impatience that I felt combined with the confusion and lack of real information made it one of the most trying times of my life. I learned a lot along the way and was amazed to find that almost no one I spoke with knew anything about HPV and its link to Cervical Cancer. Here is my true story and information that every woman really needs to know.
I was a healthy soldier of just 21 years old. I didn't know why I was so tired all the time, so I just chalked it up to long military days and planning my upcoming wedding. But when the fatigue and slight yellow tinge to my skin caught the attention of one of my superiors, I knew had better get checked out.
Mr. and Mrs. Johnson were in many ways your typical suburban couple. They were in their mid-30s. Married for eight years, with two small kids. Both worked full-time, it doesn't matter what they did for a living. But Mr. Johnson had a secret. On the weekends, about twice a month, he went down a local bar and picked up gay men. Both were patients of mine. I didn't know about his weekend escapades until it became a rather important ethical dilemma.
In 1912, the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) acquired its name and modern mission when Federal legislation gave it the authority to “investigate the diseases of man.” Over time, the PHS expanded its role by taking on all aspects of public health, including medical research and disease prevention. By the 1930s, the PHS also was coordinating State and local health departments to tackle the spread of sexually transmitted diseases such as syphilis.
One Saturday each month, dedicated volunteers gather at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in West Palm Beach to cook, talk, laugh and feed clients of Palm Beach County's Comprehensive AIDS Program (CAP). "The Dinners," as the meals have simply come to be known, are more than just a social event for the clients. It's a creative outlet for the volunteers, some of whom have cooked professionally, but all of whom have an intense interest in food - and assisting CAP as AIDS continues to claim members of the community.