HPV Vaccine

Cervical cancer is not hereditary and infectious disease, mainly caused by human papillomavirus infection (HPV). In general, when a person is subject to HPV infection, cervical intraepithelial squamous cell will change into a cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN1), two (CIN2) and three (CIN3), and finally become cervical cancer. HPV viruses are divided into "high-risk" and "low-risk". HPV infection is extremely common that women and men have the opportunity to have HPV infection. Risk has already existed at the very beginning when sexual contact first occurs. HPV is not only sexually transmitted; genital skin contact alone can already infect HPV.

  • "High-risk" HPV virus: cause cervical dysplasia and cervical cancer
  • "Low-risk" HPV virus: 6 and 11 cause genital warts

Men are not usually infected by the HPV virus and cervical cancer, but the high risk HPV virus may cause anal cancer, while low-risk types of HPV virus 6 and 11 also have a chance to cause genital warts, commonly known as cauliflower. According to the U.S. CDC and large-scale studies, they have shown that injection of the cervical cancer vaccine in addition to effectively prevent cancer caused by the HPV virus, but also can prevent genital warts.

Having multiple sexual partners will increase risk of HPV infection

Having multiple sexual partners, the risk of getting cancer due to high-risk HPV infection and genital warts due to low-risk HPV infection would increase accordingly. The antibody levels would be higher when vaccination is taken earlier. It is preferable that no sexual activity happen before vaccination. The vaccine does not affect the development and menstruation, and has been tested through large-scale clinical trials.

Women who has been injected HPV vaccine can also go for Pap smears test
The registered age of HPV vaccination in Hong Kong has increased to 9 years or above, while men’s registered age ranges from 9 to 26. Although the vaccine has failed to cure an infection, it can prevent further infection in the future. The women have been affected by HPV infection after vaccination can still protect them from HPV infection, minimizing the risk of persistent infection evolving into cervical cancer.

Even with regular partners, non-promiscuous or have sex using a condom every time, a person still has a chance infected with HPV virus. Pap smear test can test their cervix whether appeared diseased cells, making them unable to prevent HPV infection. In other words, women who has been injected the HPV vaccine also need to take regular Pap smears test to ensure that there is no HPV infection.

1 Gardasil can prevent genital warts caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) 6 and 11 of 2 Cervarix registered age in Hong Kong (female) is 9 years of age or older and there is no age limit. Gardasil registered age in Hong Kong is (females) 9-45 years old (male) 9-26 years old.

3 Gardasil is suitable for injections for men and registered age ranges from 9-26 years old.


Cervical Cancer
Prevention

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