Cervical Cancer Vaccine is to prevent the human papillomavirus (HPV) types that cause most of the cervical cancers (cancer of mouth of the uterus). Persistent infection of the uterine cervix with high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV) leads to the development of cervical cancer.The vaccine also provides protection against cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina, genital warts and oropharynx (back of the throat). It is important for girls to get HPV vaccine before they become sexually active. HPV vaccines produce the strongest immune response in preteens. Therefore, for best results, the HPV vaccines should be given at age 11 or 12. It is also recommended that HPV vaccine can be given to girls beginning at age 9 years and given up to 45 years of age.
Can women who are sexually active also benefit from the vaccine?
Females who are sexually active may also benefit from vaccination, but the protection rate may be less as they may have already been exposed to one or more of the HPV types targeted by the vaccines. The vaccine provides strong protection against new HPV infections, but they are not effective against pre-existing infections.
Do we need to get additional tests done before the vaccination?
No Pap Smear or HPV DNA testing is required before the vaccination. The vaccine has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and CDC (Centre For Disease Control) and is safe and effective. You should continue getting Pap tests for regular testing for cervical cancer because the vaccines do not prevent all of the types of HPV that can cause cervical cancer.
What are the side effects associated with Cervical Cancer prevention, HPV Vaccine?
There are only minor side effects like fever, dizziness, and nausea.
Can pregnant women opt for theCervical Cancer prevention, HPV Vaccine?
The vaccines are not recommended for pregnant women even though they appear to be safe for both mother and the unborn baby. For now, pregnant women should wait to complete their pregnancy before getting the vaccine. If a woman finds out after she has started getting the vaccine series, it’s not a reason to consider ending the pregnancy and should complete the three-dose series after the pregnancy.
Thus, HPV vaccination is the approved prevention strategy for reducing the risk of developing cervical cancer.