A vaccine that has been shown to prevent cervical cancer, precancerous genital lesions, and genital warts may soon become part of the schedule of vaccinations for preteen girls if leaders of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Health and Human Services follow the recommendation of a CDC scientific advisory panel.
In June, the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted unanimously to recommend that girls aged 11 to 12 years be routinely vaccinated against the human papilloma virus (HPV), which can cause cervical cancer, precancerous genital lesions, and genital warts. Additionally, the committee recommended that girls as young as 9 years receive the vaccine at their physician's discretion and that females aged 13 to 26 years also be vaccinated. The recommendations apply to Gardasil, a vaccine developed by Merck (Whitehouse Station, NJ) and approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) earlier in the month.
Kuehn BM. CDC Panel Backs Routine HPV Vaccination. JAMA. 2006;296(6):640-641. doi:10.1001/jama.296.6.640