HPV Vaccine Recommended For 11-Year-Old Boys

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has advised that boys and young men receive the vaccine against human papillomavirus, or HPV, to protect them from throat or anal cancers resulting from sexual activity. The vaccine has been available to boys before, with only about 1 percent of them receiving it. The committee’s recommendation means that insurance is more likely to cover the HPV vaccine, which is administered in three doses and costs pediatricians at least $300.

The committee recommended that boys aged 11 and 12 receive the vaccine and also recommended that males aged 13 through 21 who had not yet had all three doses receive the vaccine. Boys as young as 9 and males aged up to 22 and 26 can receive the HPV vaccine which loses its effectiveness if given after the onset of sexual activity.

HPV infections can lead to warts and also cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers in women and anal cancer in men and women. While cervical cancer rates have been declining for the past four decades, rates of head and neck cancers, with many arising from HPV infections, have been on the rise. HPV has also been linked to throat cancers in men and women, via oral sex.

While public health officials have noted its effectiveness, and despite the fact that between 75 to 80 percent of females and males in the US will be infected with HPV at some point, the HPV vaccine has been a tough sell in the US. While the committee recommended in 2006 that young women between the ages of 11 to 26 be vaccinated, vaccination rates have been disappointing. Last year, only 49 percent of adolescent girls have received the vaccine. The HPV vaccine prevents a disease that results from sexual activity, so parents considering vaccinating a child have to address the delicate issue of an adolescent becoming sexually active. In males, many of the cancers arise from oral or anal sex, but vaccinating boys is to the benefit of female partners because vaginal sex with infected males is usually the cause of cervical cancer in women.

One need look no further than the race for the Republican presidential nomination to see how the HPV vaccine has been a “source of contention,” with Texas governor Rick Perry coming under fire for his attempts to require girls to receive the vaccine and Representative Michele Bachmann being harshly censured for stating that the vaccine can cause mental retardation.

Potential controversies and all, Dr. William Schaffner, chairman of the department of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and a nonvoting member of the CDC committee, championed the recommendations for boys to receive the HPV vaccine:

“This is cancer, for Pete’s sake. A vaccine against cancer was the dream of our youth.”

Can parents overcome their scruples and protect their children against HPV infections and deadly cancers?


Related Care2 Coverage

Bachmann on Vaccines, Mental Retardation and Choice

Morning Mix: Will HPV Derail Perry?

Study Shows That Half of Men May Have HPV


Photo by avlxyz


Mary C.
Mary C5 years ago

"Recommend" all you want. But do NOT force me to give this to my son, who is 11 years old. Isn't this a free country?

Bryon S.
Bryon S6 years ago

Wow. Hard to believe that 40% would give their children this vaccination. One of my patients' 12 year old grandson was given a Gardasil vaccination and 10 days later suffered a debilitating stroke. Luckily he is still alive but he will never be the same. Of course his doctors were baffled by it...the blood clot was unusually deep in his brain. The runner up in my state's Miss Hawaii beauty pageant wasn't so lucky. She died from her stroke as do many others. Do you all really want to risk it for something that doesn't really protect them anyway? Do you want to give Big Pharma more money at the expense of your children's lives? Please do your research and don't listen to Kristina Chew. She is a desperate mother of an autistic child who blindly trusts Western medicine.

Samantha D.
Samantha D6 years ago

another manipulative scheme! This line from the article "the HPV vaccine which loses its effectiveness if given after the onset of sexual activity" just contradicted its purpose. If I was to ask my son and my daughter if they had sexual activity of any kind do you think they would be honest with me? Now if they had and they lie and tell me No and I take them to get vaccinated, and destroy their immune system purposely; all for nothing! The vaccine would have no preventive effect ever! People are easily influenced when there is frightening deceptive information in front of them. please read between the lines and THINK FOR YOURSELVES! QUESTION AND QUESTION. PAY ATTENTION AND BE AWARE AND CAUTIOUS!

Faith Purdy
Faith Purdy6 years ago

this is preventative medicine that you can get for free with insurance!!! you have to be an idiot not to take advantage of that!

Christine Stewart
Christine S6 years ago

I don't think this vaccine should be mandatory, but for parents to not want to vaccinate their kids because it is a sexually transmitted cancer is stupid. Your sweet, moral, virginal teenager could be assaulted by someone who has the virus, or their spouse could be a carrier and cause an infection on the honeymoon....

Mary Swan
Mary S6 years ago

This particular vaccine is being used to prevent an illness that is in fact quite rare. That does not mean I have no empathy for those who are affected by it but I do think it is unreasonable to inject all the young people on the planet with an as yet unproven shot, which appears to have a much higher than normal adverse reaction rate to maybe prevent a very few deaths from a rare form of cancer. If I thought it would work and would not cause potentially more harm to my daughter's health I would then consider it an option.

Emanuel v.
Emanuel v.6 years ago

These vaccines won't protect anyone from anything. They dont work that way., they are full of toxic adjuvants and additives and are designed to softly maim and kill. They are primers for a much greater invasion into our bodies with fatal jabs ,as already drafted by Bill Gates who with his Malthusian Mates is fostering a UN depopulation program to sterilise and kill 90% of the worlds population . It is in fact the worst kind of Fascist/Nazi medical rape ever devised. People wake up while you still have the power through the internet to warn people of the impending cull which they are frantically working on. The victims will be you and me. Those elite control freeks certainly won't be voluntering I bet.

Brian M.
Past Member 6 years ago

Nature has disease mechanisms in place to keep our species from overpopulating this planet. Vaccines are one way that we have subverted this control. Anyone who wouldn't want to vaccinate their children against cancer probably shouldn't bother vaccinating them against measles, polio, or small pox. After all, it's just another way to cull the herd. Right?

I hate Big Pharma as much or more than most, but this vaccine is a good thing. But please, don't listen to me. It's only your kids in a world that is way too full of human beings as it is.

Bryon S.
Bryon S6 years ago

It seems more and more obvious that Kristina Chew works for big pharma. She is constantly promoting pharmaceuticals like HPV vaccines while many young women are dying from strokes and other dangerous side effects at a very early age. I'm not sure how she can live with herself. If she even convinces one parent to force their child to have a life threatening vaccine she will deserve the karma she eventually receives. Kristina, I hope you are enjoying the blood money. It won't be long before you will regret what you are doing.

Marianne C.
Marianne C6 years ago

Finishing that thought:

Judging the value of preventative health care upon the sexual mythology and fallacy you connect to it is neither neither helping nor protecting "our" children. It is in fact endangering them. If this vaccine were a preventative for any other kind of cancer, there would probably be few, if any, objections to it. Since it's a cancer caused by a virus spread by sexual contact, it's somehow more important to play the "permissive" card than to just save lives. How utterly sick and destructive.