Controversial, sexual, and ethical topics
Genital Human Papillomavirus (HPV).
The Gardasil® vaccine.
The author has no significant medical training. Although the following
information was extracted from information sources believed to be accurate, you
should not make personal decisions based on this section's contents. Please consult your
A useful and authoritative fact sheet about genital HPV infection is available on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site.
The genital human papillomavirus (HPV) and other viruses:
HPV consists of a large group of more than 100 different types of viruses that can be passed from person to person during sexual activity.
Some strains of the HPV virus can, over time, cause cervical in women, and other forms of
cancer in both women and men. Cervical cancer used to be the leading cause of women's deaths from cancer. However, deaths have decreased significantly over the past four decades because more women are getting regular Pap tests, which can find cervical pre-cancer before it becomes cancer, when it is more easily treatable. Still, the American Cancer Society estimates that in the U.S.:
- 12,990 women will be diagnosed with new cases of invasive cervical cancer during 2016.
- 4,120 women will die of cervical cancer.
A vaccine has been developed that is effective against about 70% of the
dangerous strains of HPV. An ethical debate is developing over whether young
girls should be allowed or required to take the vaccine at the age of 9 to 11 when it is
most effectively given.
Topics covered in this section:
The following information sources are helpful
sources of information on the HPV virus. The hyperlinks are not necessarily still active today.
- "The basics about genital HPV & cervical cancer," Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention, at: http://www.cdc.gov/
- Chris Smith, "Herpes Simplex Virus Fact File," Health matters library,
- "HPV Vaccine Questions and Answers," Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, 2006-AUG, at:
- "Pap Test," U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, 2006-MAR, at:
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Copyright © 2007 to 2014 by Ontario Consultants on
Originally published: 2007-JAN-08
Last updated 2014-JUL-28
Author: Bruce A Robinson