A study released Monday reveals rebuked the notion young women who are vaccinated for HPV start having unprotected sex and find themselves laden with sexually transmitted infections. SHOCKING news.
The study, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, looked at 21,000 girls ages 12 to 18 between 2005 and 2010 in the U.S. and noted whether they had been diagnosed STIs like chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes, HIV/AIDS or syphilis after being vaccinated for HPV. Researchers then compared that information (found via insurance records) to that of 180,000 girls who had not been vaccinated. They found no noticeable difference between in STI levels the two groups.
Dr. Anupam Jena, the lead author of the study, told ABC News that concern that the HPV vaccine could lead to increased unsafe sexual activity in vaccinated young women was "reasonable," however, "the evidence suggests that it's not important." He and his peers hope that a study like this will remind parents that the vaccine is safe and effective, especially considering that the U.S. has incredibly low rates of vaccination for HPV compared to other nations where it's available. Despite that, a CDC study from 2013 found that since the vaccine was introduced in the U.S., there has been a "significant reduction" in cases of "vaccine-type HPV in U.S. teens."
Of course, we've been here before, and considering how popular vaccines are these days, it seems unlikely this study will do much to change any skeptical parent's mind. But congrats to those of you who got your kid vaccinated to begin with! She's a keeper.
Image via Shutterstock