Tuesday, February 5, 2013

HPV's Cancer Links May Be Broader Than You Think


With the use of the the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine gaining in popularity, the direct link between HPV infection and cervical cancer is gaining a much broader public understanding.  What's less well known to people, though, is that HPV is linked to more cancers than just cervical cancer.  As detailed in a new article in the medical journal CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, in addition to cervical cancer, HPV infection can increase the risk of vaginal and penile cancers, as well as anal and oropharyngeal cancers. Oropharyngeal cancer includes cancer that can affect the tongue, throat, tonsils, and soft palate, and its rate is quickly increasing. Vaccination against HPV can help protect girls and boys against many of these cancers and is routinely recommended to begin at ages 11 and 12 for both boys and girls but can also start later and still be effective. 

For more on HPV and cancer:

Photo: stevendepolo

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