Human papillomavirus (HPV) can cause, as clinical signs, genital warts and changes to the cervix that can lead to cervical cancer.
The spread of this sexually transmitted disease and its consequences have been changed by the arrival of the vaccine against HPV.
How is the vaccine administered?
It is an intramuscular injection, given on three different occasions over a six-month period. It is recommended that all girls are vaccinated between the ages of 10 and 12 years, just before they could have their first sexual contact, although the utility of the vaccine is demonstrated when administered to women up to 26 years of age.
How does this vaccine work?
Administering the vaccine which consists of particles that resemble the HPV virus makes the body believe that it has been infected by the virus. The human immune system reacts and creates antibodies (proteins) against HPV to eliminate it. These proteins remain in the immune system forever, so that the vaccinated body is always capable of fighting HPV.
What results does this vaccine offer?
The vaccine has been shown to be 100% effective against subtypes 6, 11, 16 and 18 of the HPV virus (some of the high-risk subtypes). The vaccine also increases the overall resistance of women to the other subtypes of the virus.
Frente a los otros subtipos de virus, la vacuna permite aumentar la inmunidad global de la mujer frente al VPH.