HPV Vaccine Schedule and Dosing

Start Talking Early, Ages 9-10, 2 doses

On Time, Ages 11-12, 2 doses

Late, Ages 13-14, 2 doses

Late, Ages 15-26, 3 doses

About 80% of people will get an HPV infection in their lifetime. Recommending HPV vaccination for all 11–12 year-olds can protect them long before they are ever exposed. CDC recommends two doses of HPV vaccine for all adolescents  at age 11 or 12 years.

Who Gets 2 Doses?
9-14 year old
  • A 2-dose schedule is recommended for people who get the first dose before their 15th birthday. In a 2-dose series, the second dose should be given 6–12 months after the first dose (0, 6–12 month schedule).
  • The minimum interval is 5 months between the first and second dose. If the second dose is administered after a shorter interval, a third dose should be administered a minimum of 5 months after the first dose and a minimum of 12 weeks after the second dose.
  • If the vaccination schedule is interrupted, vaccine doses do not need to be repeated (no maximum interval).
  • Immunogenicity studies have shown that 2 doses of HPV vaccine given to 9–14 year-olds at least 6 months apart provided as good or better protection than 3 doses given to older adolescents or young adults.
Who Gets 3 Doses?
15-26 year old
  • A 3-dose schedule is recommended for people who get the first dose on or after their 15th birthday, and for people with certain immunocompromising conditions.
  • In a 3-dose series, the second dose should be given 1–2 months after the first dose, and the third dose should be given 6 months after the first dose (0, 1–2, 6 month schedule).
  • The minimum intervals are 4 weeks between the first and second dose, 12 weeks between the second and third doses, and 5 months between the first and third doses. If a vaccine dose is administered after a shorter interval, it should be re-administered after another minimum interval has elapsed since the most recent dose.
  • If the vaccination schedule is interrupted, vaccine doses do not need to be repeated (no maximum interval).

Adolescent Vaccination Schedules

Common questions about the HPV Vaccine Schedule

ACIP makes recommendations based on the best available scientific evidence. Immunogenicity studies have shown that 2 doses of HPV vaccine given at least 6 months apart to 9–14 year-olds provided as good or better antibody response than 3 doses given to older adolescents or young adults.

Answering parents’ questions: The data we have from current scientific studies show that 2 doses of HPV vaccine given at least 6 months apart were as good or better than 3 doses in children 9–14 years of age. The immune response for older people hasn’t been studied in the same way, so we don’t have information available for that age group. For that reason, older teens and adults still need three doses for best protection.

Yes. In a 2-dose schedule of HPV vaccine, the recommended interval is 6–12 months, and the minimum interval is 5 months between the first and second dose. If the second dose is given earlier than 5 months, a third dose should be given.

Answering parents’ questions: The recommended schedule is 2 doses given 6 to 12 months apart. The minimum amount of time between those doses is 5 months. Because your child received 2 doses less than 5 months apart, we’ll need to give your child a third dose.

This person needs 1 more dose to complete a 2-dose series, which is recommended because the vaccination series was started before their 15th birthday. In a 2-dose series, the second dose is recommended 6–12 months after the first dose. In this case, the first dose was given several years ago, so the second dose can be given right away.

CDC recommends 3 doses of HPV vaccine (0, 1–2, 6 month schedule) for people age 9 through 26 years if they have certain immunocompromising conditions. People whose immune responses might be lower, for example due to HIV infection, cancer, transplantation, autoimmune disease, or taking immunosuppressant medications, should receive 3 doses to make sure they get the most benefit. However, children with asthma, diabetes, and other conditions that do not suppress immune response to vaccination can receive a 2-dose schedule.

Answering parents’ questions: Even though CDC has recommended just 2 doses of HPV for kids under 15 years, we’ll need to give your child 3 doses because he/she has a health condition that can weaken the immune system.

Any licensed HPV vaccine can be used to complete the vaccination series with the same recommended schedule and dosing intervals.

If the first dose of any HPV vaccine was given before the 15th birthday, vaccination should be completed according to a 2-dose schedule. In a 2-dose series, the second dose is recommended 6–12 months after the first dose (0, 6–12 month schedule).

If the first dose of any HPV vaccine was given on or after the 15th birthday, vaccination should be completed according to a 3-dose schedule. In a 3-dose series, the second dose is recommended 1–2 months after the first dose, and the third dose is recommended 6 months after the first dose (0, 1–2, 6 month schedule).

If the vaccination schedule is interrupted, vaccine doses do not need to be repeated.

HPV vaccination provides the most benefit when given before a person is exposed to any HPV. That’s why CDC recommends HPV vaccination at ages 11-12. HPV vaccination is also recommended through age 26 for everyone, if they did not get vaccinated when they were younger.

Vaccination is not recommended for everyone older than age 26 years. However, some adults ages 27 through 45 years may decide to get the HPV vaccine based on discussion with their clinician, if they did not get adequately vaccinated when they were younger. HPV vaccination of people in this age range provides less benefit, as more have been already exposed to HPV.

For adults aged 27 years and older, clinicians can consider discussing HPV vaccination with people who are most likely to benefit. HPV vaccination does not need to be discussed with most  adults over age 26 years.

Answering patients’ questions:

Most sexually active adults have already been exposed to HPV, although not necessarily all of the HPV types targeted by vaccination. At any age, having a new sex partner is a risk factor for getting a new HPV infection. People who are already in a long-term, mutually monogamous relationship are not likely to get a new HPV infection.

HPV vaccination prevents new HPV infections but does not treat  existing  infections or diseases.