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Letters
December 23 2009

Marketing and the HPV Vaccine

JAMA. 2009;302(24):2660-2661. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1885

To the Editor: I would like to respond to the Special Communication on marketing human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine by Drs Rothman and Rothman.1 Vaccination against the most virulent types of HPV is an extremely valuable innovation. The current cervical cancer prevention system is effective but expensive, intrusive, nonspecific, and statistically insensitive.2 Clinicians in the United States treat thousands of women each year with HPV disease fated to regress, with consequent monetary and emotional costs, procedure-related injuries, and perinatal morbidity due to cervical compromise.3,4 Human papillomavirus is the cause of cervical cancer. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved HPV vaccination as safe and effective, reflecting the opinion of cervical cancer experts that vaccination will decrease the burden of not only cervical cancer, but also precancer, with fewer abnormal Pap test results, colposcopies, and cervical treatments.5

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