HPV vaccine tied to drop in cases but many U.S. kids still unprotected

By Lisa Rapaport (Reuters Health) – A new vaccine for the cancer-causing human papillomavirus (HPV) has led to a dramatic decrease in infections among teen girls and young women, but many children still aren’t getting inoculated, a U.S. study suggests. Within six years of the U.S. vaccine debut in 2006, there was a 64 percent decline in the prevalence of four vaccine-preventable stains of the virus among girls aged 14 to 19 and a 34 percent drop among women aged 20 to 24, researchers report in the journal Pediatrics. “HPV vaccination has the potential to prevent up to three out of four HPV-associated cancers,” said lead study author Dr. Lauri Markowitz of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
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