Research finds HPV vaccine likely to reduce cervical cancer rates
New Zealand's HPV vaccination programme could reduce rates of cervical cancer - provided women get screened post-vaccination, says a new report.
A survey of over 100,000 women, carried out by the University of Otago, and published in the New Zealand Medical Journalthis week, has shown that HPV vaccination has led to a significant reduction in high-grade cervical abnormalities in women, especially those vaccinated prior to 18 years of age. The reduction in the rate of cervical abnormalities in young New Zealand women is likely to result in reduced rates of cervical cancer in future.
When compared with unvaccinated women, the report found that women who had a least one dose of the four-type HPV vaccine prior to 18 years of age had a 31 per cent lower incidence of high-grade cervical cell abnormalities when they were aged 20 to 24 years.
However, the study also demonstrates that both HPV vaccinated and unvaccinated women can develop high-grade cervical disease, underlying the need for ongoing cervical screening in both HPV-vaccinated and unvaccinated women.
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