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Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexual transmitted infection in the US, affecting as many as 8 out of 10 people, and causes significant morbidity and mortality (CDC, 2022).

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommend all males and females aged 11-26 years be vaccinated against HPV.

The vaccine protects against cancers caused by HPV infection, most notably cervical, as well as anal, vaginal, vulvar, oropharyngeal, penile, and anogenital warts.

The optimal age of vaccination for males and females is 11-12 years old, and prior to onset of sexual activity, but the vaccine is approved to start as early as age 9. For ages under 15 years old, the vaccine is given in 2 doses, 6 months to 1 year apart. For ages over 15, the vaccine is delivered in 3 doses, at 0 months, 1-2 months, then 6 months.
Decision to vaccinate over 27 years of age is made on an individual basis with shared clinical decision making. The vaccine is most effective in HPV naïve patients, but previous HPV infection, genital warts, and abnormal cervical cytology are not contraindications to vaccination (Cox & Palefsky, 2021).

Because the vaccine does not provide complete coverage against all carcinogenic HPV types, regular cervical cancer screenings, use of a diaphragm or condom, and smoking cessation are recommended preventative measures (Papadakis, McPhee, & Rabow, 2021).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022, January 3). Std Facts – Human papillomavirus (HPV). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved January 11, 2022, from https://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/stdfact-hpv.htm

Cox, J. T., & Palefsky, J. M. (2021, December 17). Human papillomavirus vaccination. UpToDate. Retrieved January 11, 2022, from https://www-uptodate-com.proxy.westernu.edu/contents/human-papillomavirus-vaccination?search=hpv&source=search_result&selectedTitle=2~150&usage_type=default&display_rank=2#H1664119832

Papadakis M.A., & McPhee S.J., & Rabow M.W.(Eds.), (2021). Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2021. McGraw Hill. https://accessmedicine.mhmedical.com/content.aspx?bookid=2957&sectionid=249359825

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Stewart Wilkey, D.O., M.P.H.

DIPLOMATE, AMERICAN BOARD OF FAMILY MEDICINE
DIPLOMATE, AMERICAN BOARD OF PREVENTIVE MEDICINE

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DIPLOMATE, AMERICAN BOARD OF INTERNAL MEDICINE

Victor M. Dalforno, M.D.

Diplomate, American Board of Pediatrics
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