Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

HPV vaccine completion rate among girls is poor, getting worse

Date:
May 4, 2012
Source:
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
Summary:
The proportion of insured girls and young women completing the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine among those who initiated the series has dropped significantly -- as much as 63 percent -- since the vaccine was approved in 2006, according to new research.

The proportion of insured girls and young women completing the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine among those who initiated the series has dropped significantly -- as much as 63 percent -- since the vaccine was approved in 2006, according to new research from the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston.

Related Articles


The study, published in the current issue of Cancer, reveals the steepest decline in vaccine completion among girls and young women aged nine to 18 -- the age group that derives the greatest benefit from the vaccine, which should be administered in three doses over six months.

"The first generation of women that could benefit from the only HPV-related cancer vaccine in existence is missing the opportunity," said lead author Abbey B. Berenson, director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Women's Health (CIRWH) at UTMB. "This vaccine prevents one of the most devastating cancers in women."

Researchers examined a large health insurance company's records of 271,976 female patients aged nine and older who received the first dose of the HPV vaccine between 2006 and 2009. Of this full sample, just 38.2 percent received all three doses within 365 days. In all but one age group (27 and older), researchers uncovered a marked drop in the number of females who completed the vaccine series:

HPV Vaccine Completion Rates

  • Age 2006 2009 Completion Dec/Inc
  • 9-12 57.5% 21.2% -- 63%
  • 13-18 54.9% 20.8% -- 62%
  • 19-26 44.3% 22.6% -- 49%
  • 27+ 15% 24.5% + 37%

Source: UTMB

Berenson said that among the 9-12 and 13-18 age groups, the drop may be at least partly attributable to parents not being accustomed to taking older children to the doctor more than once or twice each year and rarely making appointments for this age group solely around vaccines. The slight completion increase among patients 27 and older may be because these women are responsible for their own health care appointments and decisions. They also may have benefited from more doctors offering the vaccine to women older than the recommended age group in the years following FDA approval.

Approved by FDA in 2006, the HPV vaccine is administered as a three-dose series over six months and is effective in preventing infection with certain HPV strains associated with the development of cervical cancer, which affects nearly half a million women worldwide each year and kills more than a 250,000. It also protects against anal, penile and some head and neck cancers as well as genital warts. Berenson added that the vaccine also allows women to avoid the anxiety that comes along with an abnormal Pap smear. The efficacy and duration of protection are proven for only a complete vaccination; the efficacy of only one or two doses is not well established.

In addition to the declining completion rates, researchers found that girls who received the first dose from a gynecologist or obstetrician were more likely to complete the vaccine series than those who received the first dose from a pediatrician.

They also observed an increase in the proportion of female patients who received only the first vaccine dose compared to those who received two or three, indicating that providers are encouraging initiation of the vaccine series but are not following up about the second and third doses.

"It appears that patients and parents do not understand that all three shots of the vaccine are required for HPV protection, and that perhaps physicians are not doing a good enough job of educating and reminding patients to ensure completion," she said. Berenson added that the high cost of the vaccine, one of the commonly cited barriers, was not a likely issue for this group as all were covered by health insurance.

Berenson recommended that better communication with patients and parents about the required doses and scheduling follow up visits could be achieved via phone, email, text message or other methods convenient for both parties.

She underscored that it will be important for future studies to identify the barriers inhibiting patients' completion of the vaccine and solutions for how to overcome those barriers.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jacqueline M. Hirth, Alai Tan, Gregg S. Wilkinson, Abbey B. Berenson. Completion of the human papillomavirus vaccine series among insured females between 2006 and 2009. Cancer, 2012; DOI: 10.1002/cncr.27598

Cite This Page:

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "HPV vaccine completion rate among girls is poor, getting worse." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 May 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120504172103.htm>.
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. (2012, May 4). HPV vaccine completion rate among girls is poor, getting worse. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120504172103.htm
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "HPV vaccine completion rate among girls is poor, getting worse." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120504172103.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins