Vaccine To Prevent Certain Cancers Remains Underutilized

Dr. Douglas Lowy, acting director of the National Cancer Institute, discusses his role in helping to develop the HPV vaccine with Kay Colby on a recent visit to University Hospital's Seidman Cancer Center.
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A vaccine to prevent a virus known to cause at least four kinds of cancer is one of the most underutilized vaccines on the market today, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The vaccine is designed to protect against certain strains of a sexually transmitted infection called the human papillomavirus – or HPV. These strains cause almost all cases of cervical cancer, as well as four other kinds of cancer. Strains of the virus are also suspected to cause some forms of throat cancer, as well as penile cancer. Health producer Kay Colby sat down with Rick Jackson to talk about why HPV vaccination rates remain low and what's being done to address the issue. 

To view the CDC report on teen vaccination click here  

To view a fact sheet on the HPV vaccine from the Kaiser Family Foundation click here

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