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AIBU to not understand why this is not offered to women under 45?

(77 Posts)
StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 21:19:27

DD1 brought a letter home about the HPV vaccine. As I completed the form and explained to her what it was for she said that the boys also had a letter about it. I hadn't realised that boys are now included and being nosy, googled it.

What I also found out, is that it is offered to MSM (men who have sex with men) up to the age of 45 because 'they do not benefit indirectly from women being vaccinated'. I don't have an issue with this at all, I am all for anyone who is at risk being vaccinated.
www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/hpv-human-papillomavirus-vaccine/

I admit I do not know a huge amount about this, and someone may come on to explain that vaccinating women under 45 (who were too old for the vaccine when it was introduced) is not effective - in which case, fair enought.

But, if that is not the case, AIBU to think that if it is offered to men, it should also be offered to women?

foodandwine89 Tue 28-Jan-20 21:52:40

Yanbu I don’t quite get it but giving this post a bump in case someone else has a good explanation

goodgodingovan Tue 28-Jan-20 21:53:55

Hmm I'm following with interest

Drpeppered Tue 28-Jan-20 21:55:17

It is offered to women isn’t it?

PermanentTemporary Tue 28-Jan-20 21:56:33

Most people have HPV once they start having sexual contact including kissing. That's why the bulk of the vaccination programme is aimed at kids who we hope won't have had any contact yet.

As far as I know there is no proven benefit yet for adults to have the vaccination in any circumstances, but in the absence of clear evidence against, some high risk groups might be offered/advised to consider the vaccination. But I await more knowledgeable posters.

ShetlandWife Tue 28-Jan-20 21:57:27

It is offered to women isn’t it?

Only up to the age of 25

EstebanTheMagnificent Tue 28-Jan-20 22:01:31

I am not a doctor or an epidemiologist but it’s my understanding that before the vaccine most adult women (something like 4/5) will develop HPV during their lifetimes, so it’s simply too late. That is why the vaccine is given in y8 and y9, before most become sexually active.

Walkingtheplank Tue 28-Jan-20 22:03:26

An interesting question.
Google tells me that NHS started providing the vaccine to 12-13 year old girls in 2007 - do the oldest of those recipients is 26 years old. I cant see how a 44 year old man who sleeps with men needs the vaccination more than a woman who sleeps with men.
Sounds like #everydaysexism to me.

chuggachuggachoo Tue 28-Jan-20 22:03:37

I agree would best if it was available for all but.... MSM are at a much higher risk of anal cancer caused by HPV than the rest of the population.

They are also at higher risk of HIV which can in turn significantly increase their risk of HPV related cancers and genital warts.

So overall they have been identified as a high risk group which is why they are offered the vaccine.

Pipandmum Tue 28-Jan-20 22:06:37

I just googled it too and what I read is anyone up to age 25 can have it on the NHS and its recommended for people up to 45 (with payment) However I had to pay for my son to be vaccinated when he was 13 so this must be a recent change.
As well as MSM I noticed trans men and trans women who have sex with men can also get it on the nhs up to 45.

Sidge Tue 28-Jan-20 22:07:21

*Why is the vaccine onlyoffered to the MSM population that attends level 3 Specialist Sexual health services/ GUM and HIV clinics?
In all men 80-85% of anal cancers, 36% of throat cancer and 50% of penile cancers are associated with HPV infection. Men who have sex with men (MSM) are at higher risk of HPV related disease compared to heterosexual men, and MSM attend sexual health services/ GUM and HIV clinics are known to be a high-risk group within the MSM population in terms of risk behaviour and STI transmission. Since September 2008, a national HPV Immunisation Programme for girls has been delivered throughout the UK to help prevent cervical cancer. The programme offers vaccination to girls in school year 8 (age 12-13 years) with a catch-up for girls under 18 years of age. The girls’ HPV vaccine programme has proved highly successful, with coverage exceeding 85% in the routine cohort. In addition to direct protection to women, the current HPV programme induces population or herd protection, which provides substantial protection to heterosexual boys and men. However, men who have sex with men will not benefit from this population or herd protection.*

This should explain it for you.

Sidge Tue 28-Jan-20 22:07:57

Sorry bolding didn’t work.

Sidge Tue 28-Jan-20 22:09:00

And that’s an older article, since September 2019 boys in Y8 are also offered HPV vaccine too.

Fiddlersgreen Tue 28-Jan-20 22:11:52

I don’t have any answers for you but wanted to thank you for posting as it caused me to google and find out that my boys (year 9 and year 11) can still get this vaccine through the nhs.
It has only been offered to boys in year 8 since September 2019 so both my boys missed out on it

1300cakes Tue 28-Jan-20 22:12:50

That is interesting. As I understood, the only reason it "isn't effective" in women aged 25 - 45 is that they mostly have been sexually active and therefore almost certainly exposed to HPV. Not that their age itself means the vaccine won't work on them if they hadn't been. However men in that age group, whether msm or otherwise, are the same, so I don't see why it would be effective for them. Maybe I have got the wrong information though.

NikkiDawn Tue 28-Jan-20 22:27:02

Cervical cancer rates increasing, lead researcher says insufficient data to conclude if vaccine can actually stop Cervical Cancer

www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/cervical-cancer-screening-hpv-vaccination-young-women-a9295291.html

mumwon Tue 28-Jan-20 22:35:55

Isn't it because its dangerous for pregnant women (the fetus)?ie the risk of accidently giving it to pregnant women

StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 22:55:46

Thank you to those with explanations. I am aware of my ignorance so I posted largely due to my confusion.

1300cakes has pretty much summed up my point. I am too old to have received the HPV vaccine and I am not eligible for it.

Is a 40 year old msm more at risk of HPV than a 40 year old woman? Or is does the vaccine work in such a way that it won't protect the woman but could protect the man?

StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 22:56:51

I am glad to be of service Pipandmum 🙂

StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 22:58:59

Chughachuggachoocoo thank you that helps clarify some of my confusion.

StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 23:01:05

mumwon I assume not because women under 25 are eligible for it.

Melroses Tue 28-Jan-20 23:01:39

I have wondered this too.

StripyHorse Tue 28-Jan-20 23:06:20

* Iam glad to be of service Pipandmum 🙂* oops, sorry I meant Fiddlersgreen

Walkingtheplank Tue 28-Jan-20 23:24:27

Women under 25 years old should have had it at school - so offering it to women up to this age is only offering it to women who missed out at school or who are new to the UK.

zen1 Tue 28-Jan-20 23:28:23

So, if say you were a woman older than 25, could you have a test for HPV and if you were negative, would it be worth having the vaccine?

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