HPV Vaccine: It Prevents Cancer!
Nearly all American women and men will become infected with the Huma Papillomavirus (HPV) at some point in their lives. Currently, more than 80 million Americans ar infected with HPV. About 14 million people are newly infected each year. Most HPV infection are managed by our immune systems and will not progress to cancer. However, if the infection does progress it can be detrimental. There are more than 12,000 cases of HPV-related cervical cancers diagnosed each year. Approximately 4,000 deaths occurred over the last year as a result of cervical cancer.
HPV is a major threat to one’s health; however, it is highly preventable. The Gardasil-9 vaccine protects patients against the 9 most common types of HPV. Not only does the Gardasil-9 vaccine protect against HPV-related cervical cancer, but it also protects against cancers of the vulva, vagina, anus, and penis. Condoms do provide protection against HPV; however, getting vaccinated decreases your risk even more.
Garden OB/GYN recommends that young girls receive the Gardasil vaccine between the ages of 11 and 12. We recommend that each woman have an annual pap smear completed beginning at age 21, regardless of their sexual practices, in order to screen for cervical cancer and to provide optimal care to all of our patients.