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The Not-So-Secret Weapon That
Protects Forever

HPV, or Human Papillomavirus, is a common virus that can cause 9 types of cancer. While there is no treatment for HPV, there is a vaccine that can prevent it.

HPV Cancers Include:

  • Cervical
  • Vaginal
  • Vulvar
  • Anal
  • Penile
  • Head and Neck
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If your son or daughter is 9 years or older, talk to their doctor about the HPV vaccine. The vaccine is safe, effective, and long-lasting.

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Vaccinating your child at the recommended ages can help keep them healthy well into adulthood and is the best way to prevent HPV cancers later in life.

Why does my child need the HPV vaccine?

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine protects against cancers caused by HPV infection. HPV is a common virus that infects teens and adults. About 14 million people, including teens, become infected with HPV each year. Half, or 7 million, of these people fall between the ages of 15 and 24. HPV infection can cause cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers in women and penile cancer in men. HPV can also cause anal cancer, cancer of the back of the throat (oropharynx), and genital warts in both men and women.

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Fast Facts

The HPV vaccine can protect your child’s future because it helps prevent 9 types of cancer later in life.

  • HPV is a common virus that can cause 9 types of cancer.
  • Prevention Matters! HPV cannot be treated, but there is a vaccine that can prevent it.
  • The HPV vaccine works best when given between ages 9 and 12, for boys and girls.
  • The HPV vaccine is safe, effective, and long-lasting.
  • The HPV vaccine series should be completed by age 13. Effectiveness of the vaccine decreases as age at vaccination increases.

HPV vaccination can prevent more than 90% of HPV cancers when given at the recommended ages.

Who should get vaccinated?

9-12
HPV vaccination works best when given between ages 9 and 12. Children and young adults ages 13 through 26 who have not been vaccinated, or who haven't gotten all their doses, should get the vaccine as soon as possible.

The vaccine is given in two shots, with 6 to 12 months between shots.*
*3 shots of the HPV vaccine are needed for children who started that vaccine at age 15 or older, up to age 26.