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Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a common virus that is spread through sexual contact. Some types of HPVs can cause genital warts, and other types, called high-risk or oncogenic HPVs, can cause cancer. High-risk HPVs cause virtually all cervical cancers, most anal cancers, and some vaginal, vulvar, penile, and oropharyngeal cancers. Many HPV infections go away on their own within 1 to 2 years. However, infections that last for many years increase a person’s risk of developing cancer.
HPV vaccines work like other immunizations (a technique used to cause an immune response that results in resistance to a specific disease) that guard against viral infections. HPV vaccines prevent the most common types of HPV that cause cancer and genital warts. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of Gardasil 9® to prevent cancers related to HPV. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), both males and females ages 11-12 year should get vaccinated. People between the ages of 9 and 26 can also receive the vaccine.
Because the vaccines do not protect against all HPV infections that cause cervical cancer, it is important for vaccinated women to continue cervical cancer screening.
The percentage of adolescents who received 1+ dose, 2+ doses or 3+ doses of a HPV vaccine.
The National Immunization Survey Teen (NIS-Teen) vaccination coverage estimates are based on provider-reported vaccination histories from adolescents with adequate provider data (APD). NIS-Teen implemented a revised APD definition in 2014, thus estimates in 2014 and after are not directly comparable to those from prior years. However, the change in APD definition does not impact overall vaccination coverage trends; vaccines routinely recommended during adolescence, such as HPV, were less affected than vaccines routinely recommended in childhood. Additional information on implementation of the revised APD definition and assessment of impact on vaccine coverage estimates is available on the National Immunization Survey-Teen (NIS-Teen): Revised Definition of Adequate Provider Data (APD) website, published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Healthy People 2020 Target
- Increase to 80 percent the proportion of females aged 13–15 years who have received at least three doses of HPV vaccine.
Healthy People 2020 is a set of goals set forth by the Department of Health and Human Services.
Note: Goals are indicated as blue line on Detailed Trend Graphs.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, The National Immunization Surveys (NIS), 2008-2016.
|Overview Graph||Detailed Trend Graphs||Most Recent Estimates (2017)|
|Percent||95% Confidence Interval|
|Female||39.3||36.9 - 41.9|
|Male||30.4||28.4 - 32.4|
State and local statistics on HPV vaccination and HPV knowledge can be used to prioritize cancer control efforts and are available on the State Cancer Profiles website. Locate evidence-based practices and population-based intervention approaches along with evidence-based interventions on the Cancer Control P.L.A.N.E.T. web portal.
Additional Information on HPV Immunization
For the public
- HPV vaccines. American Cancer Society.
- The HPV vaccine: 3 shots of prevention. American Cancer Society.
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccination & Cancer Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Fact Sheet – HPV and Cancer. National Cancer Institute.
- Fact Sheet – Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccines. National Cancer Institute.
For health professionals
- What Works Fact Sheet: Increasing Appropriate Vaccination. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Cervical Cancer Prevention (PDQ®). National Cancer Institute.
- Applying a gender lens on human papillomavirus infection: cervical cancer screening, HPV DNA testing, and HPV vaccination.Brankovic I, Verdonk P, and Klinge I. Int J Equity Health 2013;12:14.
- FDA licensure of bivalent human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV2, Cervarix) for use in females and updated HPV vaccination recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. MMWR 2010;59(20):626–629.
- National and state vaccination coverage among adolescents aged 13–17 years – United States, 2011. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. MMWR 2012;61(34):671–677.
- Recommendations on the use of quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccine in males — Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, 2011. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. MMWR 2011;60(50):1705–1708.
- Prevalence of genital human papillomavirus among females in the United States, the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2003–2006.Hariri S, Unger ER, Sternberg M, et al. J Infect Dis 2011;204(4):566–73.
- Efficacy of a bivalent HPV 16/18 vaccine against anal HPV 16/18 infection among young women: a nested analysis within the Costa Rica Vaccine Trial. Kreimer AR, Gonzalez P, Katki HA, et al. Lancet Oncol. 2011;12(9):862–70.
- Long term protection against cervical infection with the human papillomavirus: review of currently available vaccines. Romanowkski B. Hum Vaccin. 2011;7(2):161–9.
- American Cancer Society, American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology, and American Society for Clinical Pathology screening guidelines for the prevention and early detection of cervical cancer. Saslow D, Solomon D, Lawson HW, et al. Am J Clin Pathol 2012;137(4):516–42.
- Adolescent vaccination-coverage levels in the United States: 2006–2009. Sokley S, Cohn A, Dorell C, et al. Pediatrics 2011;128(6):1078–1086.
- Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System: Prevalence Data & Data Analysis Tools. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, National Health Interview Survey.
- Health Information National Trends Survey. National Cancer Institute.