Fewer young women completing HPV vaccinations

Fewer women are taking the HPV vaccine than originally hoped by healthcare providers. For those who start, many are not completing their series, or are taking one or two doses and not the third. According to a news article published early in November, both Gardasil and Cervarix vaccines are not being met with high demand that pharmaceutical companies are hoping for.

According to the article, only one third of teens and young women who were eligible for the vaccine actually completed the entire dosing series. A series of three shots, the vaccine is marketed to protect against four strains of HPV or human papilloma virus, which is responsible for the largest majority of cervical cancer cases. The article goes on to discuss the need for public health education to encourage young women to take the vaccine or at the very least present an opportunity for the physician to discuss the pros and cons with their patients.

Unfortunately, ask any of the families around the country that have suffered dangerous side effects at the hands of this vaccine, and they will have a difficult time finding any pros in the midst of physical and mental struggles after the vaccination. Young girls and women who were once healthy and active are now bed fast and chronically ill just weeks after their HPV vaccine. Health care governing bodies call the majority of reactions “circumstantial” stating that they probably would have happened regardless of whether or not the vaccine was ever taken. Try telling that to the thousands of families who have watched their loved ones deteriorate after the shot.

Researchers are also considering a trial of text messages for women between the ages of 18 and 26 in an attempt to keep their follow-up appointment for their series of vaccines. According to a study conducted in 2008, prior to the release of the Cervarix vaccine in the US, only about half of American mothers planned to have their daughters under the age of 13 vaccinated against HPV.

Currently, government guidelines recommend 11 and 12 year old girls be vaccinated prior to becoming sexually active in attempt to reduce their HPV exposure and subsequent cervical cancer risk.

Wisely, an average of 27.3% of girls in this age group were actually vaccinated, and 39.1% completed only one go. Numbers tell with each subsequent dose and showed an average of only 30.7% of teens and young women finishing their series of vaccines.

According to the article, a contributing position cited suspicions about vaccines in general as the guitarist for the shot. He also stated that the statement surrounding HPV as sexually transmitted disease. That hurt many parents from bringing their young daughters for the shot as a form of “not my daughter” denial. He also felt that many girls of the age group to get the shot were recently on their own, either to college or otherwise and just weren’t used to making their own medical decisions.

Health officials across the country are searching for ways to bring young girls (and now boys) in for the Gardasil vaccine. Prepare for an onslaught of new media pushes–including new marketing tactics and commercials designed to make the shot seem both necessary and appealing. But take these ads with a grain of salt and research the truth about the vaccination and how it is effecting the youth of this country before making that appointment.


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