Cancers Caused by HPV
HPV infections can lead to certain types of cancer in men and women. Whether you have a son or daughter, talk to your child’s doctor about HPV vaccination to prevent infections that cause these cancers.
6 types of cancer caused by HPV
HPV can cause cancers of the:
- Cervix, vagina, and vulva in women
- Penisexternal icon in men
- Anusexternal icon and back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils (oropharynx), in both women and men
Cancer usually takes years, even decades, to develop after a person gets HPV. CDC recommends HPV vaccination at ages 11–12 years, to prevent HPV infections that may lead to these cancers. HPV vaccination prevents invasive cancers, as well as anal, vaginal, cervical, and vulvar precancers (abnormal cells that can lead to cancer), further reducing the health burden of diseases caused by HPV.
There is no way to know which people who get HPV now will develop cancer or other health problems later. People with weakened immune systems (including individuals with HIV/AIDS) may be less able to fight off HPV and more likely to develop health problems from it.
|Cancer||Cases in Women||Cases in Men|
|Back of the Throat||2,200||11,800|
Source: How Many Cancers Are Linked with HPV Each Year?
Data as of August 2020
HPV vaccination can prevent over 90% of cancers caused by HPV.
Cervical cancer and HPV
More than 9 of every 10 cases of cervical cancer are caused by HPV. Cervical cancer can be largely prevented by HPV vaccination.
Every year in the United States:
- Nearly 200,000 women are estimated to be diagnosed with a cervical precancer, or abnormal cells on the cervix that can lead to cancer.
- 11,000 cases of cervical cancer are caused by HPV.
- Over 4,000 women die from the disease.
Cervical cancer was once the leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States. HPV vaccine and cervical cancer screening have made it one of the most preventable cancers. Even women who have received HPV vaccine should still get regular cervical cancer screening starting at age 21 years.
Screening alone won’t protect from most cancers caused by HPV
Cervical cancer is the only type of cancer caused by HPV that can be detected early by a recommended screening test. The other types of cancer caused by HPV may not be detected until they cause health problems. HPV vaccination prevents infections that cause these cancers.
Vaccinating boys can prevent cancers caused by HPV in men
HPV doesn’t only affect women. More than 4 out of every 10 cases of cancer caused by HPV occur among men.
Every year in the U.S., over 14,000 men get cancers caused by HPV. Whether you have a son or daughter, talk to your child’s doctor about HPV vaccination.