The HPV vaccine prevents the human papillomavirus (HPV) types that cause most cervical cancers as well as some cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina, and oropharynx (back of throat including base of tongue and tonsils). The vaccine also prevents HPV types that cause most genital warts.
The Pediatric Infectious Disease Society of the Philippines (PIDSP) and Philippine Foundation for Vaccination (PFV) recommend a 2-dose HPV vaccine series for females ages 9-14 years, and a 3-dose series for females ages 15 years and older.
The Philippine Society for Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (PSMID) recommends HPV vaccination for females until the age of 26 years for the prevention of cervical cancer and anogenital warts.
Ideally, females should get the vaccine before they become sexually active and exposed to HPV. Females who are sexually active may also benefit from vaccination, though they may get less benefit. This is because they may have already been exposed to one or more of the HPV types targeted by the vaccines. However, few sexually active young women are infected with all HPV types prevented by the vaccines, so most young women could still get protection by getting vaccinated.
Girls and women do not need to get an HPV test or Pap test to find out if they should get the vaccine. However, it is important that women continue to be screened for cervical cancer, even after getting all recommended shots of the HPV vaccine. This is because the vaccine does not protect against all types of cervical cancer.
The vaccine is not recommended for pregnant women. Although studies show that the HPV vaccine does not cause problems for babies born to women who were vaccinated while pregnant, more research is still needed. A pregnant woman should not get any doses of the HPV vaccine until her pregnancy is completed.
Consult your doctor for more information on HPV vaccination.
References: https://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/stdfact-hpv-vaccine-young-women.htm. Accessed 23 September 2022 http://www.pidsphil.org/home/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/CIS-2018.pdf. Accessed 23 September 2022 https://www.psmid.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/CPG-ADULT-IMMUNIZATION-2018.pdf. Accessed 23 September 2022
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