Young men, women missing HPV shots

Jeannette Daniel
April 18, 2017

There are 109 known different types of Human papillomaviruses. As the Washington Post notes, the prevalence of HPV was higher in men than women in both groups, in addition to being far higher among blacks than other ethnic and racial groups.

Overall, about 23 percent of the participants were infected with a high-risk strain of genital HPV, the report found.

You'd think that a vaccine that protects people against more than a half-dozen types of cancer would have people lining up to get it.

While many people live with HPV without even knowing it, and in many cases it goes away on its own without causing any health problems, some forms of the virus are linked to cancer. "By the time they're in their mid-20s, people are infected and it's too late".

While great progress has been made in creating HPV vaccines, current approaches to prevent infection have limitations.

By the time a sexually active person is in their early-20s, they've nearly certainly been exposed to HPV.

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Using patients' Community Health Index (CHI) numbers, the team could link anonymous results from women born in 1995 attending cervical screening with their vaccination records. All girls and boys aged 11 or 12 should get the recommended three-dose series of HPV vaccine, the CDC advises. Why not? Because physicians didn't want to offend parents by suggesting their kids were sexually active.

The CDC estimates that HPV vaccination could eventually prevent about 90 percent - or 28,000 - of the annual causes of HPV-related cancers in the United States. According to the Guttmacher Institute, a research organization that studies sex, abortion, and contraception, very few 12-year-olds have yet to have sex. The researchers at the CDC are hoping to bring more awareness to HPV and to get screened.

In fact, nearly every sexually active man or woman will get it during their lifetime.

Researchers found that 45.2% of men and 39.9% of women were infected with any genital HPV in 2013 to 2014.

"Deep kissing (i.e., French kissing), rimming (i.e., oral-anal contact), autoinoculation, and peripartum exposure have also been associated with prevalent oral HPV infection, albeit inconsistently". Geraldine McQuillan, a senior infectious disease epidemiologist with the CDC and the lead author of the report, said researchers were surprised to see the number of adults who had high-risk genital HPV. Early diagnosis is important, which is why women should be screened regularly with a Pap test for cervical cancer.

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