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Use of Gardasil Expanded to Include Other HPV-Related Cancers

The FDA has approved the expanded use of Gardasil to include the prevention of vaginal and vulvar cancer caused by the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) type 16 and 18. HPV type 16 and 18 is a sexually transmitted disease that can cause genital warts, about 70% of cervical cancers, and some vulvar and vaginal cancers.  Recently, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the Gardasil vaccine for girls and women ages 9 to 26 for the prevention of cervical cancer caused by HPV type 16 and 18.

Up to 6.2 million new cases of genital HPV cases are expected each year in the United States.  HPV can cause the cells on the cervix, vulva, and vagina to grow abnormally and become precancerous or cancerous.  Studies have shown that Gardasil can prevent HPV-related cervical, vulvar, and vaginal cancer. 

Gardasil is not useful for girls and women who have already been infected with HPV.  Even with Gardasil, it is still important for women to receive regular Pap Tests.  Ask your doctor if Gardasil is right for you.

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