Genital human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted virus in the United States. More than half of sexually active men and women are infected with HPV at some time in their lives. Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine (Cervarix) will help prevent infection.
About 20 million Americans are currently infected, and about 6 million more get infected each year. HPV is usually spread through sexual contact.
Most HPV infections don’t cause any symptoms and go away on their own. But HPV can cause cervical cancer in women. Cervical cancer is the 2nd leading cause of cancer deaths among women around the world. In the United States, about 10,000 women get cervical cancer every year and about 4,000 are expected to die from it.
HPV is also associated with several less common cancers, such as vaginal and vulvar cancers in women and other types of cancer in both men and women. It can also cause genital warts and warts in the throat.
There is no cure for HPV infection, but some of the problems it causes can be treated.
Side Effects Of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine (Cervarix)
Anyone who has ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction to any component of HPV vaccine, or to a previous dose of HPV vaccine, should not get the vaccine. Tell your doctor if the person getting vaccinated has any severe allergies, including an allergy to latex.
HPV vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women. However, receiving HPV vaccine when pregnant is not a reason to consider terminating the pregnancy. Women who are breastfeeding may get the vaccine.Any woman who learns she was pregnant when she got this HPV vaccine is encouraged to contact the manufacturer’s HPV in pregnancy registry at 888-452-9622. This will help us learn how pregnant women respond to the vaccine.
People who are mildly ill when a dose of HPV vaccine is planned can still be vaccinated. People with a moderate or severe illness should wait until they are better.
Warnings & Precautions
- Routine Vaccination
HPV vaccine is recommended for girls 11 or 12 years of age. It may be given to girls starting at age 9.
Why is HPV vaccine given to girls at this age? It is important for girls to get HPV vaccine before their first sexual contact, because they won’t have been exposed to human papillomavirus.
Once a girl or woman has been infected with the virus, the vaccine might not work as well or might not work at all.
- Catch-up Vaccination
The vaccine is also recommended for girls and women 13 through 26 years of age who did not get all 3 doses when they were younger.
HPV vaccine is given as a 3-dose series
- 1st Dose: Now
- 2nd Dose: 1 to 2 months after Dose 1
- 3rd Dose: 6 months after Dose 1
Additional (booster) doses are not recommended.
HPV vaccine may be given at the same time as other vaccines.
Dosage Of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine (Cervarix)
Ask your doctor. They can give you the vaccine package insert or suggest other sources of information.
Call your local or state health department.
All information has been provided courtesy of MedLinePlus from the National Library of Medicine and from the FDA.