Navigation Links
Many Teen Girls Mistakenly Think HPV Vaccines Cut Risk for All STDs

By Kathleen Doheny
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly one in four girls who gets the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine mistakenly thinks that her risk of getting other sexually transmitted diseases is lowered, a new study indicates.

HPV is the most commonly transmitted sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the United States, with nearly 30 percent of sexually active girls aged 14 to 19 infected. Some virus types can raise the risk for genital warts and cervical cancer.

"I think it's important to counsel [girls] about what the vaccine protects against," said lead researcher Dr. Tanya Kowalczyk Mullins, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.

The findings were reported in the January issue of the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine.

Two HPV vaccines are now licensed in the United States. One, Gardasil, protects against two HPV strains linked with genital warts and two HPV types linked with cervical cancer. Another vaccine, Cervarix, induces immunity to the two HPV types linked with cervical cancer.

The HPV vaccine is recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for boys and girls aged 11 to 12, with catch-up immunizations recommended to the age of 26 for women and 21 for men.

In the study, Mullins polled 339 girls, average age nearly 17, after their first of three HPV doses, and their mothers. Nearly 60 percent of the girls were sexually experienced.

Mullins wanted to know the girls' perceived risk of getting HPV after the vaccination, their perceived risk of getting other STIs and their perceived need for continued safer sex behaviors.

"Most girls correctly thought the vaccine does not protect them against STIs other than HPV," Mullins said.

However, 24 percent of the girls mistakenly thought they were at lower risk for other STIs such as syphilis and gonorrhea after the HPV vaccine, she found.

Girls who thought this were less likely to have information about the vaccine and about HPV infection.

Doctors who discuss the HPV vaccine with girls and their parents ''may need to emphasize the limitations of the vaccine and to specifically address that the vaccine does not prevent other STIs,'' the researchers wrote.

Mullins said it is not known how girls perceive risk after the entire three-dose series.

The study was supported by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

Some study co-authors reported receiving grants from Merck, which makes Gardasil. One reported doing consulting work for Sanofi Pasteur, which has marketed Gardasil in Europe.

The study results bear "no big surprises," said Dr. H. Hunter Handsfield, a member of the board of directors for the American Social Health Association and a professor of medicine at the University of Washington Center for AIDS and STD in Seattle. He is an advisor to Merck for its HPV vaccine.

"If anything, it's a fairly pleasing result that it's only 24 percent [who think the HPV vaccine protects against other STIs]," he said.

Before the vaccines were available, Handsfield said, "social and religious conservatives" expressed worries that teens would practice safe sex less often after getting the vaccine. The latest findings suggest this isn't happening by and large, he noted.

Doctors do need to be clear with their young patients when giving them the HPV vaccine, Handsfield said. They need to tell them that the vaccine does not protect against all STIs, and that when the patients become sexually active they need to practice safer sex behaviors, such as using condoms.

More information

For more on HPV, go to the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

SOURCES: Tanya Kowalczyk Mullins, M.D., M.S., assistant professor, pediatrics, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine; H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D., professor, medicine, University of Washington Center for AIDS and STD, Seattle; January 2012, Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Study finds headaches after traumatic brain injury highest in adolescents and girls
2. Girls More Prone Than Boys to Headaches After Head Injury
3. Girls Feel Sadder Than Boys When Friends Let Them Down
4. Girls with family history of breast disease should avoid alcohol
5. Abused girls may have higher risk of heart disease, stroke as adults
6. Abused Girls at Greater Risk for Heart Disease as Adults: Study
7. Specialized Warm-Up May Reduce Girls Knee Injuries
8. Teenage girls and senior students suffered highest levels of PTSD after major earthquake
9. BPA Exposure in Womb Linked to Behavioral Woes in Girls
10. CDC Considers Vaccinating Boys, Not Just Girls, for HPV
11. Protecting adolescent girls from unwanted unprotected sex
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... continue the expansion of the company’s growing product line of food safety and ... tshawytscha) and Sockeye (Oncorhynchus nerka) – allow InstantLabs to offer fast, reliable species ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... 2015 , ... It’s official: Tattoo taboo is a thing of the past. ... Millennials (a whopping one in three aged 18 to 25 is inked). As tattoos ... their ink. In fact, RealSelf , the world’s largest community for learning and ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... of adjunctive imaging is the focus of numerous abstracts accepted for presentation here, ... 4, 2015. Nine abstracts highlight the use of Volpara Solutions’ quantitative breast ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... Inc. (“Visage”), a wholly owned subsidiary of Pro Medicus Ltd. (ASX: PME), has ... the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) 2015 annual meeting through December 3 ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... McLean, VA., December ... a fixed price per sprint agile development contract to support the National Geospatial-Intelligence ... five years, provides software engineering, infrastructure, as well as operations and sustainment support ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... VERONA, Va. , Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... today unveiled a new corporate logo and brand ... in the design and engineering of bladed products ... --> --> Serving ... fiber, glass, and auto glass equipment, AccuTEC,s product ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... --> --> ... Acid Labeling Market by Product (Reagents & Kits, Services), ... Vitro Transcription, Reverse Transcription, End Labeling), by Region - ... market is expected to reach USD 1,925.7 Million by ... a CAGR of 8.65%. Browse 77 market ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... December 1, 2015 Russia has ... trials. 70% of new drugs registered in Europe ... . --> Russia has always been a ... new drugs registered in Europe in 2015 were ... Russia has always been a country of ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: