American Cancer Society Recommendations for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Vaccine Use

Background

There are vaccines that can help protect young women and men from some HPV infections. These vaccines are used to prevent cancer that can result from an HPV infection. They will not treat or protect against cancer from an existing HPV infection. Each vaccine requires a series of injections (shots). The injections are most often given in the muscle of the upper arm.

American Cancer Society recommendations

  • Routine HPV vaccination for girls and boys should be started at age 11 or 12. The vaccination series can be started as early as age 9.
  • HPV vaccination is also recommended for females 13 to 26 years old and for males 13 to 21 years old who have not started the vaccines, or who have started but not completed the series.  Males 22 to 26 years old may also be vaccinated.*
  • HPV vaccination is also recommended through age 26 for men who have sex with men and for people with weakened immune systems (including people with HIV infection), if they have not previously been vaccinated.

*For people 22 to 26 years old who have not started the vaccines, or who have started but not completed the series, it’s important to know that vaccination at older ages is less effective in lowering cancer risk.  

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team
Our team is made up of doctors and master’s-prepared nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.

Along with the American Cancer Society, other sources of information include:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Toll free number: 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636)
TTY: 1-888-232-6348
Website: www.cdc.gov

    For information on infectious diseases, vaccines, cancer, and many other health topics

National Cancer Institute
Toll-free number: 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237)
TTY: 1-800-332-8615
Website: www.cancer.gov

    Has up-to-date information about cancer and cancer-related topics for patients, their families, and the general public

*Inclusion on this list does not imply endorsement by the American Cancer Society.

Saslow D, Andrews KS, Manassaram-Baptiste D, et al. Human papillomavirus vaccination guideline update: American Cancer Society guideline endorsement. CA Cancer J Clin. 2016.

Last Medical Review: July 19, 2016 Last Revised: July 19, 2016

American Cancer Society medical information is copyrighted material. For reprint requests, please see our Content Usage Policy.