The HPV vaccine that doctors would recommend

Oct 24, 2008

Despite the government's decision to choose the vaccine Cervarix for the UK human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination programme, every doctor I have spoken to has chosen Gardisal for their own children, says a doctor on bmj.com today.

Phil Hammond, a general practitioner and broadcaster, shares his consultant colleague's recommendation ("you'd be mad not to protect your daughter against genital warts if you can afford to") and the HPV vaccine choice he made for his children.

The genital warts lobby is largely undercover, he says, "but if it was breast cancer, there would doubtless be an industry supported march on Downing Street…There are no letters to the Times, and warts have never made it to the cover of the Mail."

Both vaccines are equally effective against the strains of HPV that are known to be responsible for seven in ten cases of cervical cancer, but only Gardisal protects against 90% of genital warts.

With 100 000 new cases of genital warts in England each year and condoms only reducing transmission by up to 50%, the far safer option is to vaccinate with Gardisal, argues Hammond.

But, although Gardasil is available privately to parents, at a cost of £350 to £400, most will not be able to afford it.

According to Hammond, with the current cost of treating genital warts estimated to be £23 million, the government's decision may be a false economy. Within three or four years the use of Gardasil would have begun to have a considerable financial payback.

The government's cheap deal for Cervarix only applies to the vaccination programme. The fact is that most doctors would recommend Gardasil because of the extra protection it offers, he writes.

In addition, he argues that there has been a glaring lack of patient choice. Having chosen one vaccine for us the government has failed to provide information on the other vaccine, which is given no mention on the NHS Choices website or on the NHS vaccination site.

He believes that for any licensed treatment, the public should be given quick and easy access to unbiased information on efficacy and safety.

Source: British Medical Journal

Explore further: National Cancer Institute supports next-generation Austrian HPV vaccine

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

HPV vaccination prevents genital warts in males

Feb 04, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- A new international study shows the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine protects against genital warts and other lesions associated with HPV in males. HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease and ...

Cancer vaccine's added benefit

Jul 06, 2010

Vaccination against the virus that causes cervical cancer has had an additional benefit - a marked decline in cases of genital warts, a new study has found.

HPV vaccines may reduce a wide range of genital diseases

Feb 05, 2010

High-coverage human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccinations among adolescents and young women may result in a rapid reduction of genital warts, cervical cell abnormalities, and diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, researchers ...

FDA: Merck's Gardasil stops genital warts in boys

Sep 04, 2009

(AP) -- Merck's blockbuster vaccine Gardasil, which is already used to prevent cervical cancer in women, also stops viruses that cause genital warts in men, the Food and Drug Administration said Friday.

Recommended for you

A new tool in drug overdose prevention

Oct 30, 2014

The Center for Disease Control reported earlier this month that the heroin overdose death rate across 28 states it surveyed doubled between 2010 and 2012. This sharp increase and the chilling statistics that say more than 11 ...

Nasal spray treats heroin overdose

Oct 28, 2014

"Every year, drug overdoses are responsible for roughly 1000 ambulance calls in Oslo," says Arne Skulberg, an anaesthesiologist, a PhD candidate at NTNU and the 2014 winner of Norway's Researcher Grand Prix ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

herpes_look
not rated yet Oct 28, 2008
1 in 4 have herpes, and half of Americans have STDs, So if you have an STD, meet others with the same disease at STDromance.com

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.