CDC recommends HPV vaccine for males

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices has recommended that all males between 11 and 21 years of age should receive vaccines to protect themselves from the human papillomavirus.

Previously, the vaccine against HPV was recommended for young women alone, as the virus had been shown to cause cervical cancer in women. The virus also can cause mouth and throat cancers and genital warts in both men and women, the State Column reports.

The vaccine against HPV is a series of three shots that boost the immune response of an individual. In a study in which at least one dose was administered to young women, those injected were protected against 70 percent of infections. Most people who receive the vaccination get only one or two doses, not the entire course of the three shot series.

By vaccinating young males against HPV, the spread of HPV will be reduced, especially in cases of one partner spreading the virus to another, along with the risk of genital warts, cervical cancer and other cancers.

A recent report stated that close to 16 million Americans between ages 14 and 69 are infected with HPV in their throat or mouth. At least 50 percent of men and women who are sexually active get infected with HPV with most not developing symptoms.