Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine (Gardasil)
What is HPV?
Genitalhuman 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.
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 causecervical cancerin women. Cervical cancer is the 2nd leading cause of cancer deaths among women around the world. In the United States, about 12,000 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 anal and oropharyngeal (back of the throat, including base of tongue and tonsils) cancers in both men and women. HPV 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.
HPV vaccine - Why get vaccinated?
The HPV vaccine you are getting is one of two vaccines that can be given to prevent HPV. It may be given to both males and females.
This vaccine can prevent most cases of cervical cancer in females, if it is given before exposure to the virus. In addition, it can prevent vaginal and vulvar cancer in females, and genital warts and anal cancer in both males and females.
Protection from HPV vaccine is expected to be long-lasting. But vaccination is not a substitute for cervical cancer screening. Women should still get regular Pap tests.
Who should get this HPV vaccine and when?
HPV vaccine is given as a 3-dose series
Additional (booster) doses are not recommended.
This vaccine is recommended for the following people who have not completed the 3-dose series:
This vaccinemaybe given to men 22 through 26 years of age who have not completed the 3-dose series.
It isrecommendedfor men through age 26 who have sex with men or whose immune system is weakened because of HIV infection, other illness, or medications.
HPV vaccine may be given at the same time as other vaccines.
Who should not get HPV vaccine or should wait?
What are the risks from this vaccine?
This HPV vaccine has been used in the U.S. and around the world for about six years and has been very safe.
However, any medicine could possibly cause a serious problem, such as a severe allergic reaction. The risk of any vaccine causing a serious injury, or death, is extremely small.
Life-threatening allergic reactions from vaccines are very rare. If they do occur, it would be within a few minutes to a few hours after the vaccination.
Severalmildtomoderateproblems are known to occur with this HPV vaccine. These do not last long and go away on their own.
What if there is a serious reaction?
What should I look for?
What should I do?
VAERS is only for reporting reactions. They do not give medical advice.
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) is a federal program that was created to compensate people who may have been injured by certain vaccines.
Persons who believe they may have been injured by a vaccine can learn about the program and about filing a claim by calling1-800-338-2382or visiting the VICP website at Web Site .
How can I learn more?
HPV Vaccine (Gardasil) Information Statement. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Immunization Program. 5/17/2013.