6 things to know about the HPV vaccine for your daughter

In her interim budget speech on February 1, 2024, Indian finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, “We will encourage vaccination for girls in the age group of 9-14 years for the prevention of cervical cancer."

Cervical cancers are caused by an infection with certain high-risk types of human papillomavirus (HPV). It is passed from one person to another during sex.

What causes cervical cancer?

The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine is one of the only two vaccines available today that can prevent cancers.

Vaccines to prevent cancer

The ideal age for this vaccination in girls is between 9 to 14 years with a two-dose regimen before 14 years and a three-dose regimen after.

Ideal age for HPV jab

It will not help getting the HPV jab once pre-cancerous lesions have already developed, say doctors. Response to the vaccine is better at a young age.

In rare cases

HPV vaccines have been licensed for boys which prevent infections that lead to cancers of the penis, anus and back of the throat.

HPV vaccine for boys

Common side effects of the vaccine include pain, redness, swelling at the site of the injection, fever and nausea.

Side effects