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The Oral Cancer Foundation Urges HPV Vaccination for Males
Date:10/24/2007

For the public health, we need to fast-track research and approvals now, says foundation

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif., Oct. 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On the heels of a study published this month in the journal Cancer, and recent supporting science related to HPV and oral cancer in the New England Journal of Medicine, the Oral Cancer Foundation is urging researchers to expedite investigations on the safety of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations for males, and the FDA to fast track the approval once scientific due diligence has been accomplished.

"The study affirms what we have long believed, namely that the vaccine can reduce oral cancer rates if given to both males and females," says Brian Hill, Founder and Executive Director of the foundation.

Currently, the vaccine, which shields against HPV strains 6, 11, 16 and 18, is administered to girls and adolescent females to protect against cervical cancer.

Deaths from cervical cancer, which number about 3,700 annually, have steadily declined due to improved methods of early detection, and a population that knows the importance of annual screenings. Oral cancer also lends itself to early detection through a simple visual and tactile examination which could easily be implemented, but does not have a nationally adopted program of public awareness and compliant professionals engaged in such a screening process. In the US, 93 people per day will develop oral cancer, and one person will die from it every hour. This is more than double the death rate of cervical cancers, and is higher than that of many other cancers we commonly hear about. Because it is frequently painless and goes unnoticed in its early stages, the cancer is usually not found until late stages, when prognosis is poor. Opportunistic screenings like those done for cervical cancer could change this were they being done routinely.

In fact, oral cancer, which occurs in those very visible parts of the mouth that we all are
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SOURCE The Oral Cancer Foundation Inc.
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