Preventing HPV-Associated Cancers

HPV Vaccine: Ask About It for Your Child

In this video, a family physician and a pediatrician explain why they made sure their children got HPV vaccine at age 11 or 12.

Vaccines protect against the types of human papillomavirus (HPV) that most often cause cervical, vaginal, vulvar, penile, and anal precancers and cancers, as well as the types of HPV that cause most oropharyngeal cancers. The vaccine used in the United States also protects against the HPV types that cause most genital warts.

Cervical cancer also can be prevented or found early through regular screening and follow-up treatment. Learn about cervical cancer screening test options.

  • The Pap test (or Pap smear) looks for precancers (cell changes on the cervix that might become cervical cancer if they are not treated appropriately).
  • The HPV test looks for the virus that can cause these cell changes.

If your doctor finds any abnormal results from a cervical cancer screening test, make sure to follow up in case you need treatment or further tests.

Currently, screening tests for other types of HPV-associated cancers are not recommended.