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  • HPV (Human Papillomavirus)
  • Vaccine Recommendations

I have a patient who was diagnosed with HPV types 16 and 18. The patient received a properly spaced Gardasil series in 2006 when she was 25 years old. Did the HPV vaccine she received in 2006 fail to protect her?

In clinical trials, HPV vaccines were shown to be highly effective (more than 95%) for prevention of HPV vaccine-type infection and disease among persons without prior infection with the HPV types included in the vaccine. The most likely explanation for this situation is that the patient was exposed to at least HPV types 16 and 18 prior to vaccination. The HPV vaccine is not effective in preventing infection from HPV types a person has been exposed to prior to vaccination. The vaccine also cannot prevent progression of HPV infection or HPV-related disease. The 9vHPV vaccine protects against 9 different types of HPV.

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