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With some questionable health advice being posted by your friends on Facebook, politicians arguing about the state of the American healthcare system and a new medical study being summarized in just a sentence or two on TV---that seems to contradict the study you heard summarized yesterday---it can be overwhelming to navigate the ever-changing landscape of health news.

To Your Health: HPV Vaccination is for Boys and Girls

The Kaiser Family Foundation reports that the vaccine for human papillomavirus (HPV) is the first and only vaccination that helps protect individuals from getting many different types of cancer that are associated with different HPV strains. The vaccine protects young people against infection from certain strains of HPV, the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI) in the United States. Since HPV vaccines were first introduced in the U.S. in 2006 there have been changes in the range of protection they offer and the dosing regimen.

Hello, I'm Dr. Brooke Hildebrand Clubbs at Southeast Missouri State University. In February, the Missouri Immunization Coalition is focused on HPV Vaccination and HPV-related cancer prevention.

I recently interviewed Dr. Kenneth Haller, a pediatrician and an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, to talk about how HPV vaccination recommendations have changed since they were first introduced.

When HPV vaccine was first introduced, the recommendation was to be given to teenage girls and to young women up to the age of 26. That's because they were the only ones where there was evidence of prevention of cancer, in this case cervical cancer. Since then other cancers in males, as well as cancers of the throat in both males and females have been recognized as caused by HPV so now it's recommended for pretty much everyone age nine and above.
Dr. Kenneth Haller




Dr. Brooke Hildebrand Clubbs is an assistant professor in the Department of Leadership, Middle & Secondary Education. She writes for special publications of The Southeast Missourian and is a certified Community Health Worker.
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