A Vaccine to Prevent Cancer
Gardasil 9 has currently been a hot topic in many recent healthcare articles. Gardasil 9 could help protect girls, young women and boys against certain cancers caused by human papillomavirus (HPV). January is Cervical Cancer Awareness month, so I thought now would be a great time to inform our patients and readers on Gardasil 9 and answer some common questions we have received in the pharmacy. As always, you can also call Valu-Med at 405-741-1200 and speak with one of our vaccine experts for any additional questions.
What is Gardasil 9 and who should get it?
Gardasil 9 is a vaccine indicated in girls and young women 9 through 26 years of age for the prevention of cervical, valvular, vaginal and anal cancers, precancerous or dysplastic lesions, and genital warts all caused by HP virus. Gardasil 9 is also indicated in males 9 through 15 years of age for the prevention of anal cancer, precancerous or dysplastic lesions and genital warts all caused by HPV.
• Gardasil 9 is administered as three separate shots, with the initial dose followed by additional shots given two months and six months later.
Positive Health Benefits
In the United States, about 12,000 women get cervical cancer every year, and about 4,000 women die from it. Gardasil 9 can prevent cervical as well as several other types of cancers.
Who should not get the vaccine?
Anyone who has had a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction to a dose of HPV vaccine should not get another dose and anyone that has a severe, life-threatening allergy to any component of the HPV vaccine should not get the vaccine. Gardasil 9 is not recommended in pregnant women.
Potential Side Effects
The most common adverse reactions in females 9 through 26 years of age were injection-site pain, swelling, erythema (redness), and headache. The most common adverse reactions in boys 9 through 15 years of age were injection-site pain, swelling and erythema (redness).
Important information you should know
- Gardasil 9 does not remove the need for cervical cancer screening in women
- Gardasil 9 does not treat an HPV infection