HPV Vaccine For Boys - Not Just For Girls

By: Holly L. Thacker, MD • Posted on October 27, 2011 • Updated March 02, 2021

HPV Vaccine For Boys - Not Just For Girls

In 2011, the HPV vaccine was approved for boys. HPV, also known as human papilloma virus, causes NOT only cervical cancer, but other cancers and conditions such as:

  • Throat cancer
  • Cancer
  • Some lung cancers
  • Very pesky skin problems, such as warts and genital warts

Our best cancer screening test is the pap smear. We now know that almost all cervical cancer is caused by certain strains of HPV. This is not a "sex vaccine," but a cancer vaccine! All three of my teen sons were vaccinated.

Vaccines reduce infection risk, which reduces misery, infection and death rates. Many people do not avail themselves of the benefits of the vaccine. We hope to soon have vaccines against breast cancer and prostate cancer.

Originally, the HPV vaccine was first approved for girls and young women. This is a well-studied vaccine. Unfortunately, there are many myths and misunderstandings about vaccines. When my son was a teen, he wore a t-shirt with the saying, "one less" - meaning one less cancer. One less cancer in any female or male is a beautiful thing!

Be Strong, Be Healthy, Be in Charge!

- Dr. Holly L. Thacker

Holly L. Thacker, MD, FACP is nationally known for her leadership in women’s health. She is the founder of the Cleveland Clinic Women’s Health Fellowship and is currently the Professor and Director of the Center for Specialized Women’s Health at Cleveland Clinic and Lerner College of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Thacker is also the Executive Director of Speaking of Women’s Health and the author of The Cleveland Clinic Guide to Menopause. Her special interests and areas of research including menopause and related medical problems including osteoporosis, hormone therapy, breast cancer risk assessment, menstrual disorders, female sexual dysfunction and interdisciplinary women’s health.


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