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If there was a vaccine that could help protect your child from developing certain cancers later in life, would you want them to get it? If you answered “yes,” then you should get your child vaccinated against the human papillomavirus (HPV).

With nearly 80 million Americans infected, HPV is extremely common (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). There are more than 100 strains, some of which are deemed “high-risk.” High-risk HPVs can cause anal cancer, cervical cancer, oropharyngeal cancers, penile cancers, vaginal cancers and vulvar cancers (National Cancer Institute).

VaccineCancers Caused by HPV:

  • 95% of anal cancers

  • Virtually 100% of cervical cancers

  • 70% of oropharyngeal cancers

  • 35% of penile cancers

  • 65% of vaginal cancers

  • 50% of vulvar cancers

HPV vaccines provide strong protection against many cancers caused by the virus. “All of these vaccines help prevent infection by HPV-16 and HPV-18. These 2 types cause about 70% of all cervical cancers and pre-cancers, as well as many cancers of the anus, penis, vulva, vagina, and throat” (American Cancer Society). 

Both girls AND boys should get the first HPV vaccine in the 3-shot series when they are 11 or 12 years of age. The HPV vaccines are safe and effective. Reduce your child’s risk of getting cancer later in life by getting them vaccinated against HPV. 

 

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