Vaccine could eliminate cervical cancer: study

Rapid deployment starting in 2020 of screening and vaccination could prevent more than 13 million cervical cancers by mid-century worldwide. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

What you need to know:

  • HPV is extremely common and includes more than 100 types of virus, at least 14 of them cancer-causing.
  • The viruses have also been linked to cancers of the anus, vulva, vagina and penis.
  • It takes 15 to 20 years for cervical cancer to develop in women with normal immune systems. If the immune system is weak or compromised – by HIV infection, for example – the cancer can develop far more quickly.

The rapid scale-up of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine could virtually eliminate cervical cancer in a handful of rich countries within three decades, and in most other nations by century's end, researchers said Wednesday.

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