|Vaccinations save lives|
A new study has found that the HPV vaccination has led to major reductions in the number of young women who have the infection, which can cause cervical cancer.
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) 16 and 18 infections, which cause the majority of cervical cancer cases, decreased by 86% in women aged 16 to 21 who were eligible for the vaccination as adolescents between 2010 and 2016.
The results suggest that the HPV vaccination programme will bring about large reductions in cervical cancer in the future. Cervical cancer is currently the most common cancer in women under 35, killing around 850 women a year.In addition, the programme has led to a marked decline in genital wart diagnoses. The number of genital wart diagnoses in sexual health clinics fell in girls aged 15 to 17 by 89%, and in boys of the same age by 70%, between 2009 and 2017 as a result of herd immunity. Genital warts are caused by some low-risk strains of HPV, which the current vaccine also protects against.