The Impact of HPV Vaccination on Cervical Cancer Incidence and Mortality

Maurie Markman, MD


March 04, 2022

This transcript has been edited for clarity.

I'm Dr Maurie Markman from Cancer Treatment Centers of America, and I wanted to briefly discuss a very interesting article that recently appeared in JAMA Pediatrics related to the question, "Does HPV vaccination reduce the risk for cervical cancer?"

We actually have very strong data now from Sweden and Great Britain that such is the case. But what about data from the United States?

This paper that I'm referring to, entitled, "Human Papillomavirus Vaccination and Trends in Cervical Cancer Incidence and Mortality in the US," begins to answer that question.

These investigators looked at SEER data for the incidence of cervical cancer, as well as National Center for Health Statistics data looking at mortality from cervical cancer from 2001 to 2005, which would have been the prevaccination era, to 2010-2017 — the postvaccination era — to ask the question, "Do we see evidence of a decrease in incidence or mortality of actual cervical cancer?"

The answer is yes.

These data demonstrated very clearly that among individuals aged 15-24 years, which is getting into the age where we were doing vaccination at that point, there was a 38% reduction in the incidence of cervical cancer from 2001-2005 to 2010-2017. Very importantly, there was a 43% reduction in mortality in that age group.

I must emphasize that these are preliminary data. We don't know exactly which patients here were individuals who were vaccinated. We don't have detailed information on changes in sexual practice or screening. At a population level, these data are very consistent with what they're seeing from Great Britain and Sweden, and support very clearly the data suggesting that we would reduce cervical cancer with vaccination.

I would encourage you to read this paper and follow this area very closely, and very importantly, for adolescents that you're involved with — your own family, friends, or if you're a doctor for this population, your patients — to encourage HPV vaccination. It's a critically important public health strategy to prevent cancer. I thank you for your attention.

Maurie Markman, MD, is president of medicine and science at Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia. He has more than 20 years of experience in cancer treatment and gynecologic oncology research.

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