What is the HPV Vaccine?

The HPV vaccine prevents cervical cancer and other diseases in females caused by certain types of genital human papillomavirus (HPV). There are currently three HPV vaccines available.

Cervarix and Gardasil protect against two to four types of HPV that are responsible for 70% of cervical cancers.

The new Gardasil 9 HPV vaccine also protects against cervical precancers, vulvar cancer, vaginal cancer, anal cancer, and genital warts.


Who Should Receive the HPV Vaccine?

The HPV vaccine is recommended for girls as young as 9 years of age. Ideally, the vaccine should be administered before the onset of sexual activity. However, females who are already sexaully active may also benefit from vaccination.


Is the HPV Vaccine Safe?

All three HPV vaccines (Cervarix, Gardasil, and Gardasil 9) are licenced by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its use. It has also been tested and will continue to be studied in many countries around the world. The HPV vaccines were found to be safe and caused no serious side effects.

You should discuss individual concerns with your doctor before receiving the vaccination.


Should I be Tested Before Vaccination?

Screening for HPV is not required before receiving the HPV vaccine. The chance of having been infected by more than one type of HPV is minimal. Any women can get various degrees of benefits from vaccination, regardless of whether they have been previously infected or not.

Your doctor may ask you a few questions about your health status before giving you the HPV vaccine. You should discuss individual concerns with your doctor before receiving the vaccination.


Do I Still Need Regular Screening After Vaccination?

Yes! The HPV vaccine can protect you from up to about 70% of cervical cancers. To fully protect yourself, you should continue to have regular Pap smear tests even after vaccination.


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