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Drop in Genital Warts in Young Women Since HPV Vaccination

Five years into vaccination program, proportion of young women ≤30 years with genital warts down

TUESDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- For Australian women aged 30 years or younger there has been a decrease in the proportion found to have genital warts following the introduction of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine program, according to research published online April 18 in BMJ.

Hammad Ali, M.D., from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, and colleagues conducted a trends analysis of national surveillance data collected from eight sexual health services from 2004 to 2011 to measure the effect of the national HPV vaccination program, which started mid-2007, on genital warts. A total of 85,770 Australian-born patients were seen for the first time from 2004 to 2011, of which 9.0 percent were found to have genital warts.

The researchers found that in the vaccination period, from 2007 to 2011, the proportion of women diagnosed with genital warts decreased significantly, from 11.5 to 0.85 percent for under-21-year-olds and from 11.3 to 3.1 percent for 21- to -30-year-olds. For heterosexual men, similar significant declines were noted, from 12.1 to 2.2 percent among those younger than 21 years and from 18.2 to 8.9 percent among those aged 21 to 30 years. There were no significant decreases in wart diagnoses for women or heterosexual men aged over 30 years. For 235 women younger than 21 years who reported prior HPV vaccination, no genital wart diagnoses were made in 2011.

"This study shows that the proportion of young women diagnosed as having genital warts has continued to decline since the quadrivalent HPV vaccination program started in Australia in 2007," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including CSL Biotherapies, which funded the surveillance network and manufactures the vaccine.

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