Skip to content

    HPV/Genital Warts Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    HPV Vaccine Protects Against Infection 8 Years Out

    Doctors continue to urge parents to get the recommended three doses for their preteens

    WebMD News from HealthDay

    By Steven Reinberg

    HealthDay Reporter

    MONDAY, Aug. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new long-term study shows that the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine appears to protect against the sexually transmitted virus for at least eight years.

    HPV is thought to cause the majority of cervical cancers. Certain strains, such as HPV 16 and 18, are most strongly tied to these tumors. The virus is also believed to cause genital warts in both men and women and certain head and neck cancers.

    Among the vaccinated preteens in the new study, none developed any of the diseases or conditions associated with HPV during the study period, the researchers reported.

    "The body's response against HPV by making antibodies looks very good at eight years, and it seems like no booster doses will be necessary," said lead researcher Dr. Daron Ferris, director of the HPV epidemiology and prevention program at Georgia Regents University in Atlanta.

    "There are all indications that the vaccine is safe, and it looks like it's effective in preventing genital warts and other diseases caused by HPV," he added.

    The report was published online Aug. 18 in the journal Pediatrics.

    Dr. Adriana Cadilla, a pediatrician at Miami Children's Hospital, said, "It is very promising that we now know that we are going to have protection for at least eight years."

    For the study, the researchers randomly assigned 1,781 sexually inactive boys and girls aged 9 to 15 to the HPV vaccine or placebo shots. After eight years, those who received the vaccine still had antibodies against HPV, they found.

    "If you haven't had your child vaccinated, please get them vaccinated," Ferris said. "It's more dangerous not to give the vaccine to your children. Thousands of people will continue to die each year if they are not vaccinated."

    Despite the vaccine's benefits, only about 57 percent of girls aged 11 to 15 are getting the first dose of the vaccine, and only 33 percent are getting all three doses. Among boys, about 34 percent are getting the first dose of the vaccine, but only about 14 percent are getting all three doses, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease control and Prevention.

    Today on WebMD

    HPV Vaccine Future
    Article
    STD Overview
    Slideshow
     
    STD Facts Quiz
    Quiz
    Syringes and graph illustration
    Tool
     
    Sex Drive Killers
    Slideshow
    Genital Herpes Risks Quiz
    Quiz
     
    Young couple holding hands
    Quiz
    Herpes Vaccine Study
    Video
     
    Condom Quiz
    Quiz
    HPV Symptoms Tests
    Article
     
    Get The STD Picture
    Feature
    cancer cell
    Slideshow
     

    WebMD Special Sections