Women's Health Texas – San Antonio

HPV Vaccine

The HPV vaccine protects women from infection and certain cancers

Our San Antonio OBGYNs strive to provide the best preventive healthcare and advice to our patients. We think it’s important for women to know more about the HPV vaccine that can prevent sexually transmitted infections and cancer. Currently, it is the only vaccine available that can prevent certain types of cancer. HPV, or human papillomavirus, is actually many types of related viruses. However, we know that there are about 40 different types that spread through sexual contact, including oral, anal and vaginal sex.

HPV is the most common STI in the U.S.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that almost every young man and woman who is sexually active today will get some type of HPV. Many people never have problems, and the infection clears up within a year or two.

However, the HPV infection does cause symptoms in other people, making the HPV vaccine critical for good health. For example, HPV can cause genital warts and cervical cancer. It can also cause vaginal, anal, penile, mouth and throat cancer. Thankfully, the vaccine provides protection.

Young women from ages nine to 26 should receive the HPV vaccine

Currently, physicians recommend that girls receive the HPV vaccine beginning as early as age nine. Getting the vaccine at this early age helps protect young women before they become sexually active, preventing them from being exposed to the virus at all. It is also recommended for women ages 13 to 26 who did not receive the vaccine at an earlier age.

Getting the vaccine involves receiving a series of three shots over a period of six months. This vaccine is safe, and the most common side effect is soreness at the injection site.

Our San Antonio OBGYNs work hard to provide our patients with the best preventive health care, and the HPV vaccine is an important component. To discuss the human papillomavirus vaccine with one of our physicians, contact us.