In 2014, over 200 teen and tween girls fell sick with an unidentified illness in the small town of El Carmen de Bolivar, northern Colombia. The young girls ranged from 9 years old to 16 years old and one by one they began to experience the same odd symptoms.
They all experienced fainting, numbness in their hands and headaches. In isolated incidents, it could be any number of things, but after more than 200 young girls began to report the same symptoms within a matter of days, doctors grew concerned.
The strange outbreak appeared only to affect the teen girls and some suggested that it had been caused by their recent vaccinations against Human Papillomavirus (HPV). The sick girls had all received Gardasil vaccines. The immunization protects girls and women against four strains of the virus, some of which can cause cervical cancer.
In a single weekend 120 girls overwhelmed the hospitals in the small town, collapsing their limited medical facilities. All of the girls were released after their symptoms were deemed not to be life-threatening.
But worried parents still demanded answers. There was another possibility for the strange outbreak, but it has never been confirmed...