New research finds the HPV vaccine is exceeding expectations and drastically cutting rates of cervical pre-cancer
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a group of more than 150 viruses. They are the most common of the numerous sexually transmitted infections. That’s the bad news. The good news is that there are now vaccines against HPV. Even better news is that HPV vaccines lower one’s chances of getting a cancer-causing virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Here’s another dose of great news: The BBC reports that researchers from Strathclyde, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, and Glasgow Caledonian universities, who studied Scottish schoolgirls who have been given the vaccine over the last ten years as a part of a nationwide health program, say that “they found the vaccine had led to a 90% cut in pre-cancerous cells.”
Studying 140,000 cervical screening records and cross-referencing with vaccination records, the researchers say they were pleasantly surprised at how effective the vaccination program had been. The original hopes and projections for the program were to knock down two types of HPV and around 80% of pre-cancer cases among young women. Instead, researchers have found that it protects against three additional HPV viruses, “which means it eliminates nearer 90% of cervical pre-cancer in Scotland.” Researchers believe that the herd protection that widespread vaccination programs offer to even those who cannot get vaccines is the reason for the Scottish program’s success.
Adding these findings to research showing that young women and girls who receive the HPV vaccine do not suddenly become hysterically promiscuous, there is next to no possible excuse not to support its widespread application.