Nearly half of US adults infected with genital HPV

A new Australian Institute of Health and Welfare report shows the amount of young people who have been vaccinated against HPV

The research team, led by Dr Kevin Pollock, senior epidemiologist at Health Protection Scotland, believe the reduction in HPV may lead to a commensurate drop in cervical cancer cases, and hope to see a decrease in new diagnoses within a year. Among those cases, close to 23% of adults have the high-risk form of the STI that, if it doesn't go away, can lead to cancers of the cervix, vulva, vagina, penis, anus, and throat. "People need to realize that this is a serious concern".

About 4 percent of all adults had an oral infection with a cancer-causing strain of HPV.

The new CDC report also addresses oral HPV infections.

Each year, the virus causes 30,700 cancers in men and women, according to the CDC. Currently, in the USA, there are about 80 million people who have HPV and almost 15 million adults and teenagers will receive it on an annual basis according to CDC's estimations.

In December, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommended reducing the number of shots in the HPV vaccine from three to two for girls and boys between the ages of 9 and 14.

Of course not everybody with the cancer-causing strain will get cancer, but why spin the roulette wheel when you could just get a vaccine? As the Washington Post notes, the prevalence of HPV was higher in men than women in both groups, in addition to being far higher among blacks than other ethnic and racial groups.

The focus should not have been on sexually transmitted infections, some say.

The Gardasil vaccination is most effective if administered before a young person becomes sexually active. As such, the CDC recommends all kids between the ages of 11 or 12 be vaccinated, though women can still be vaccinated up to age 26 and men through age 21.

While great progress has been made in creating HPV vaccines, current approaches to prevent infection have limitations. All personal lubricants marketed and sold in the US must be approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). "The program is newer for boys, however, and we expect this rate to increase over time", she said.

This work, funded by the Scottish Government, is part of public health work in Scotland looking at the effect of the vaccine on levels of cervical lesions and cancer-related cell abnormalities.

The vaccine protects against the two high-risk HPV types (types 16 and 18), which cause 70% of cervical cancersin women and 90 per cent of all HPV-related cancers in men. Some people still think vaccination encourages youth to become promiscuous. For example, in Australia and the United Kingdom (including Scottland who presented the dramatic HPV rate drops), the vaccine was introduced as a cancer vaccine, which Paskett says, is what it really is.

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