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Can the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine help if you already have the virus?

ANSWER

No. If you have a current HPV, the vaccine won't get rid of the infection. However, if you have one type of HPV, the vaccine may prevent you from getting another type of the virus.

SOURCES:

CDC: "Genital HPV Infection - Fact Sheet."

CDC: "What is HPV?"

CDC: "HPV Vaccine -- Questions & Answers."

CDC: "HPV Vaccine: What You Need to Know."

Center for Young Women's Health: "HPV Vaccine."

Giuliano, A. , February 2011; vol 364: pp 401-411. The New England Journal of Medicine

News release. FDA.

National Conference of State Legislatures: "HPV Vaccine."

Immunization Action Coalition: “HPV Vaccines: Questions & Answers.”

American Cancer Society: '' What are the key statistics about cervical cancer?''

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on March 30, 2019

SOURCES:

CDC: "Genital HPV Infection - Fact Sheet."

CDC: "What is HPV?"

CDC: "HPV Vaccine -- Questions & Answers."

CDC: "HPV Vaccine: What You Need to Know."

Center for Young Women's Health: "HPV Vaccine."

Giuliano, A. , February 2011; vol 364: pp 401-411. The New England Journal of Medicine

News release. FDA.

National Conference of State Legislatures: "HPV Vaccine."

Immunization Action Coalition: “HPV Vaccines: Questions & Answers.”

American Cancer Society: '' What are the key statistics about cervical cancer?''

Reviewed by Traci C. Johnson on March 30, 2019

NEXT QUESTION:

How does the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine protect me for life?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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