HPV Vaccinations Lead to Reduced CIN2+ Cancer Cases

Gardasil 9 vaccine is available at select clinics and pharmacies in the USA

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Researchers in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports (MMWR) published the first-ever estimate of cervical precancers using population data of women. 

During the 2008–2016 study period, high-grade cervical lesions (CIN2+) rates in a population-based surveillance system declined in women aged 18–24 years. 

The estimated numbers of CIN2+ cases were 216,000 (2008) and 196,000 (2016). 

According to these researchers, an estimated 76 percent of these cases were attributable to one or more of the 9-valent human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine types. 

This is important data since the current HPV vaccine, Gardasil 9 protects against those identified causes of the CIN2+ cases.   

To estimate CIN2+ cases, this report also extends previously reported HPV-IMPACT CIN2+ rates, by including rates in women aged older than 40 years.

Two additional population-based surveillance systems have published CIN2 or CIN3 rates, but have not used them to estimate numbers of CIN2+ cases. 

Both the estimated number and rates of CIN2+ cases in this report must be interpreted in the context of cervical cancer prevention strategies, including the year when the HPV vaccine began to be recommended for girls, starting at 11 years old and cervical cancer screening. 

Infection with HPV, the most common sexually transmitted infection, can lead to a variety of HPV-associated cancers. Although most HPV infections are transient, persistent infection with oncogenic types can lead to precancerous lesions and cancer. 

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HPV is a group of more than 150 related viruses, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

Many HPV types can infect the anogenital area, but HPV 16 and HPV 18 are responsible for approximately 50percent of high-grade cervical dysplasias and 70 percent of cervical cancer cases. 

These researchers concluded saying, ‘Increasing coverage of HPV vaccination in females at the routine age of 11 or 12 years and catch-up vaccination through age 26 years for those not adequately vaccinated, will contribute to a further reduction in cervical precancers.’ 

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The Gardasil 9 vaccine is available at select clinics and pharmacies in the USA.

No researcher conflicts of interest were disclosed for this study. The corresponding author is Nancy M. McClung, [email protected].

Relevant Links: CDC vaccination schedules, CDC vaccine price list, international travel alerts, and report vaccine side effects.