A teenage dancer has been paralysed from the waist down and may never walk again after having the controversial HPV cervical cancer vaccine.
Chloe Brookes-Holder, 18, was a normal 12-year-old who danced six days a week and dreamed of a career on stage when she had the jab at school.
But in the months that followed the healthy teenager fell ill with dizziness, headaches, fatigue and bone and joint pain, and her muscles weakened.
She has since lost three stone – dropping from 8st 2oz to just 5st – has lost all feeling in her legs and is fed through a tube.
Shocking photos show the teenager’s emaciated body, hooked up to wires and drips, as she lies in hospital, where she has spent most of the last 12 months.
Devastatingly, the pretty teen has been told she may never walk again – let alone waltz about a dance floor – because she still has no feeling in her lower body.
After years of medics telling her it was all in her head, Chloe says her doctor now believes the jab triggered an autoimmune response, causing her body to attack itself.
She is certain her symptoms are linked to the vaccine, which protects against the human papilloma virus and can cause cervical cancer, which kills around 900 women a year.
This comes as dozens of parents call for more research into the jab, which has been routinely offered to 12 and 13-year-old girls since 2008.
Chloe, of Cheltenham, Glos., who was on course to achieving As at GCSE when she fell ill, said: “At first, my family and I didn’t put two and two together.
“We thought the vaccine was safe because they give it in schools and on the letter the parents were given to sign consent I remember reading “it saves lives”.
“Who on earth would turn a new, supposedly effective form of treatment down?
“We trust our government to keep us safe but now, since getting sick from something the NHS gave me I don’t trust any medical professionals that I don’t know.
“Why? Because I’ve been treated in such a barbaric way. Its been hell on earth.
“Before I got sick I did things girls aged 12 should do. I hiked, mountain biked, went to the park, roller-bladed, went to the cinema and birthday parties – I had friends.
“I danced six days a week and loved to go to after-school sport and dance clubs every night. I was on the right road to getting As at GCSE.
“I wanted to have a dance career and my heart bleeds with the torture knowing I may never walk again and therefore ever dance again.”
Chloe was given a course of three Cervarix injections while in year eight at Pittville School in Cheltenham, Glos., between November 2010 and June 2011.
Between the second and third jabs, she fell ill with a string of viruses, started experiencing debilitating muscle pain and was diagnosed with fibromyalgia.
A gastrointestinal disorder left her in agony every time she ate, she lost control of her bladder and was later diagnosed with POTS, which causes abnormal heart rate.
A year after having the injection, Chloe also began experiencing paralytic episodes and collapsing at school, unable to control her lower body.
Chloe said: “My immune system hit rock bottom. It started to heavily affect my school and social life. I used to fall asleep in lessons no matter how hard I concentrated.
“I’d go home and get straight into bed with my uniform on, and despite sleeping up to 15 hours a day the exhaustion never went away.
“I had a gradual input of debilitating muscular pain, chest pain and dizziness, poor temperature control, and severe headaches.”
She added: “Every day is a battle against the never ending symptoms. It is not ‘just a coincidence’ as those who don’t want to believe it say.
“To all mums, dads and daughters out there who are considering getting the vaccine – don’t presume, do research and educate before you sign on the dotted line.
“I’m not scaremongering, I just care about others. This is real. This is the pure ugly truth. I want to make people aware so they can make a decision for themselves.”
Cervarix was given to six million girls and while it is no longer offered to girls at school by the NHS, a new HPV vaccine, Gardasil, is.
European Medicines Agency statistics show that up to January 2017, 3,683 adverse reactions to Cervarix were reported, and 11,802 to Gardasil.
Some 380 families, represented by the UK Association for Vaccine Injured Daughters, have called for more information in schools and research into potential side effects.
Medics have dismissed their concerns and NHS England insists that the jab is not dangerous, writing on its website that it is a “safe vaccine”.
Freda Burrell, of the UK Association for Vaccine Injured Daughters, said: “Many medical professionals will not link the vaccine to the girls’ health problems.
“Yet commonsense should speak loudly if their medical records were excellent prior to the vaccine and their health changed dramatically after they had the jab.”
Public Health England and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency issued a joint statement in response to the claims.
They said: “As with all vaccines, the safety of the HPV vaccine is under constant review. Every report of a suspected side effect is taken seriously.”
They “concluded that there is no credible evidence of a link between the HPV vaccine and a range of chronic illnesses.
“The European Medicines Agency has also ruled out a link to Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS).”