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Health Tip: Getting Your Child Vaccinated

Posted 22 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

-- Vaccinations are a necessary part of keeping your child healthy, but the pain and fear may be difficult to endure. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests: Talk to the pediatrician about ways to manage your child's pain. Distract a young child during the shot by singing a song, blowing bubbles or playing a game. Act the doctor about using a numbing spray or cream. Breast-feed or offer a pacifier to babies during vaccination. Stay calm and reassure your child that everything is OK. Read more

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How Is the HPV Vaccine Perceived on Twitter?

Posted 18 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Dec. 16, 2016 – Twitter conversations regarding the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine – which protects against sexually transmitted infections – tend to be positive, researchers say. Despite the vaccine's effectiveness, some oppose its use and voice their opinions on social media. So Drexel University researchers decided to assess what's being said on Twitter about the vaccine for preteens. They found more positive tweets than negative ones. "In our sample, I expected to see a large number of negative tweets based on traditional news coverage of the topic and because HPV can be portrayed as controversial because it brings together the fields of sexually transmitted infections, immunizations and cancer prevention," said study co-author Philip Massey. "But that wasn't the case on Twitter, we found." "It is always encouraging to see that more positive messages about health are ... Read more

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Pubic Grooming Tied to Higher STD Rates

Posted 6 Dec 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 5, 2016 – Brazilian bikini waxing and similar forms of personal grooming may be all the rage, but they come with a heightened risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted disease, new research suggests. The study found that frequent groomers of pubic hair are three to four times more likely to contract a sexually transmitted infection, such as herpes, human papillomavirus (HPV) or syphilis. "Grooming is linked to a heightened self-reported sexually transmitted disease risk, and for those who groom frequently or remove all of their hair often, the association is even higher," said lead researcher Dr. Charles Osterberg. He's an assistant professor of urology and surgery at the University of Texas Dell Medical School in Austin. Still, the study didn't prove a direct cause-and-effect relationship between pubic grooming and sexually transmitted infections, it was only designed to ... Read more

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2 Doses of HPV Vaccine Effective for Younger Teens

Posted 22 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 22, 2016 – New global research confirms that two doses of the vaccine for HPV, rather than three, can protect younger teens against the sexually transmitted virus. Based on this study and others, U.S. government health officials revised their guidelines last month to recommend a two-dose regimen for teens younger than 15. Prior to that revised guideline, three doses were recommended for adolescents and young adults up through 26 years of age. The vaccine protects against infection by HPV (human papillomavirus), which is the cause of 90 percent of cervical cancers, according to the U.S. National Cancer Institute. The new review included more than 1,500 young people, aged 9 to 26, who were vaccinated against HPV at 52 sites in 15 countries. For the study, the researchers gave two doses of HPV vaccine to teens aged 9 to 14, and three doses of the vaccine to older teens and ... Read more

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Routine School Vaccine Requirements Raise HPV Shot Rates, Too

Posted 8 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 8, 2016 – Schools that require routine vaccines as a condition of attendance have higher rates of vaccination, including higher rates of immunization for the human papillomavirus (HPV), a new study finds. The HPV vaccine protects against cervical cancer, as well as other cancers linked to the sexually transmitted virus. Children at these schools are also more likely to get recommended shots for tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough) – the so-called Tdap shot – and meningitis (the meningococcal vaccine), researchers said. One pediatrician who reviewed the new findings believes school mandates can have a big influence on whether or not a child gets immunized. "Tdap and meningococcal vaccinations rates tend to be higher due to mandatory legislation as a requirement for school entry," said Dr. Jane Swedler, chief of adolescent medicine at Winthrop-University ... Read more

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Anal Cancer Rates Rising in Many Parts of the World

Posted 2 Nov 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 2, 2016 – Anal cancer rates are on the rise in many countries. But vaccination against human papillomavirus (HPV) – a virus linked to the development of anal cancer – may help curb rates of the disease, a new study suggests. Researchers looked at data from the International Agency for Research on Cancer. The data included 18 countries. The investigators found that anal cancer rates have been increasing in women and men in 13 of those countries, particularly Australia and other countries in the Americas, and northern and western Europe. In those countries, a major subtype called anal squamous cell carcinoma (ASCC) was much more common than others, and was the main reason for the overall increasing rates of anal cancer. Rates of another major subtype, anal adenocarcinoma (AAC), have been stable or decreasing in most populations, the researchers said. "The reason for the ... Read more

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Are Fewer Cervical Cancer Screenings Needed After HPV Vaccine?

Posted 18 Oct 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Oct. 17, 2016 – Women who've been vaccinated against human papillomavirus (HPV) likely need fewer cervical cancer screenings, a new study argues. Just how often a woman needs a cervical cancer screening depends on the type of vaccine she had, the researchers said. Women vaccinated with earlier versions of the HPV vaccine – which protect against the two worst cancer-causing strains of the sexually transmitted virus – only need cervical cancer screening every five years starting at age 25 or 30, the study concluded. Women who've received the updated vaccine, which protects against seven cancer-causing strains of HPV, need screening even less often. The researchers recommend testing these women every 10 years starting at age 30 to 35 and ending at age 65. Both screening regimens would be much less rigorous than current guidelines, which call for cervical cancer exams from age 21 ... Read more

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How One Clinic Got a Big Boost in HPV Vaccination Rates

Posted 5 Oct 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 5, 2016 – The way to increase the number of girls and boys who get the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine may be as simple as giving it as part of a routine bundle of vaccines, a new study suggests. The HPV vaccine, which guards against the virus that causes most cervical cancers, is only being used in just over half of teen girls in the United States, lagging far behind other recommended vaccinations in this age group. But, by lumping HPV in with other required vaccinations, a Denver clinic was able to dramatically increase vaccination rates to nearly 90 percent in boys and girls, researchers report. "The program is simple and low cost, and something that can easily be rolled out at other institutions," said lead researcher Dr. Anna-Lisa Farmar. She is an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Colorado in Aurora. "It's become a part of our general ... Read more

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A Doctor's Words Key to Whether Child Gets HPV Vaccine

Posted 2 Oct 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 30, 2016 – The language doctors use when recommending the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine can influence whether parents will have their children immunized, a new study finds. HPV causes most cases of cervical cancer and a large percentage of vaginal, vulvar, anal, penile and oropharyngeal cancers. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends boys and girls receive the three-dose HPV vaccination beginning at age 11 or 12. As of 2015, only 42 percent of girls and 28 percent of boys ages 13 to 17 had completed the HPV vaccine series, according to the CDC. Previous research found that doctors' recommendations play a major role in whether parents have their children vaccinated. In this new study, researchers examined if specific language used by doctors affects parents' decisions. The study included more than 1,500 parents. Their children were between the ... Read more

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HPV Vaccine More Effective Than Thought: Study

Posted 29 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 29, 2016 – The vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, which doctors believe causes most cases of cervical cancer, appears even more effective than believed, a new study finds. "After eight years of vaccination, the reduction in the incidence of cervical neoplasia [abnormal growth of cells], including pre-cancers, have been reduced approximately 50 percent. This is greater than what was expected – that's pretty exciting," said lead researcher Cosette Wheeler. She is a professor of pathology and obstetrics and gynecology at the University of New Mexico, in Albuquerque. The study also showed that the protection appears to occur even when only one or two of the recommended doses of the vaccine are given. "Right now, the recommendation is three doses for girls and boys before the 13th birthday, so that you are protected before you become exposed," Wheeler ... Read more

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More Parents Believe Vaccines Are Unnecessary

Posted 29 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 29, 2016 – Pediatricians are encountering more parents who refuse to have their children vaccinated, mainly because they don't see the point of vaccines, a U.S. survey found. In the survey, conducted in 2013, about 87 percent of pediatricians said they had encountered vaccine refusals, an increase from the 75 percent who reported refusals during the last survey from 2006. The most common reason, provided by three out of every four parents: Vaccines are unnecessary because the diseases they prevent have been wiped out in the United States. "Because these diseases are gone, people no longer fear them, even though many of them are only a plane ride away," said Dr. Kathryn Edwards, co-author of a new American Academy of Pediatrics report based on the survey. "They don't seem to realize that these diseases do exist in other places, and could come here." The percentage of ... Read more

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Put Vaccines on Kids' Back-to-School List

Posted 21 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 19, 2016 – As parents start preparing to send their young ones back to the classroom, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it's a good time to remember that vaccines play an important role in keeping children healthy. So, make sure your child is up-to-date on immunizations and fully protected from diseases such as measles, diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (whooping cough), the agency advises. "Parents should know that vaccines protect children from many serious illnesses from infectious diseases. The risk of being harmed by vaccines is much smaller than the risk of serious illness from infectious diseases," Marion Gruber, director of the Office of Vaccines Research and Review at the FDA, said in an agency news release. Most side effects of vaccines are minor and temporary. For example, there may be soreness at the injection site or a child may develop a mild fever. ... Read more

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Cancer Experts Endorse CDC's HPV Vaccine Guidelines

Posted 19 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 19, 2016 – The American Cancer Society has endorsed the U.S. government's HPV vaccination recommendations, which include immunizing all preteens against the sexually transmitted human papilloma virus. In a new report, the cancer society says 11- and 12-year-old girls as well as boys should be vaccinated to guard against cancers associated with HPV. This is in line with updated guidelines from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "HPV vaccination has the potential to prevent tens of thousands of cancers and hundreds of thousands of pre-cancers each year," said the lead author of the report, Debbie Saslow. She is the cancer society's director of cancer control intervention for HPV vaccination and women's cancers. "It is critical that all stakeholders – families, health care providers, and others – make HPV vaccination a priority, so that prevention of ... Read more

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HPV-Linked Cancers Still Climbing in U.S.

Posted 9 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 – Cancers linked to the sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV) keep rising in the United States, even though most cases are preventable, health officials reported Thursday. Cervical cancer, and mouth and throat cancers in men, accounted for most of the nearly 39,000 HPV-associated cancers diagnosed annually from 2008 to 2012, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. HPV vaccination and cervical cancer screening could keep more than 28,000 of these cancers from developing, the agency estimated. "Most cervical cancers are preventable with regular screening for precancerous lesions among women aged 21 to 65 years, linked with follow-up for abnormal test results," the CDC researchers wrote in the report. But cancer experts said that public perception may have to change first, especially with respect to HPV vaccination. "In order to ... Read more

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1st HPV Test for Use With Preservative Fluid

Posted 8 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 8, 2016 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved Roche's cobas HPV Test – the first diagnostic to be used with cervical cells obtained for a Pap test and collected in SurePath Preservative Fluid. SurePath is an FDA-approved liquid collection fluid that's frequently used for Pap tests. But until this latest approval, no human papillomavirus (HPV) test had been approved to be used with the fluid, the FDA said in a news release. HPV strains account for some 70 percent of cervical cancers globally. The U.S. National Cancer Institute estimates there will be nearly 13,000 new cases of cervical cancer detected this year, and the disease will cause more than 4,100 deaths. The Swiss drugmaker Roche in 2012 warned that using cervical cells in SurePath fluid with an existing HPV test could produce false-negative results, the FDA said. This could have led to lack of ... Read more

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