(HealthDay News) – For Australian women aged ≤30 years there has been a decrease in the proportion found to have genital warts following the introduction of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine program, according to research published online April 18 in BMJ.

Hammad Ali, MD, from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, and colleagues conducted a trends analysis of national surveillance data collected from eight sexual health services from 2004–2011 to measure the effect of the national HPV vaccination program, which started mid-2007, on genital warts. A total of 85,770 Australian-born patients were seen for the first time from 2004–2011, of which 9% were found to have genital warts.

The researchers found that in the vaccination period, from 2007–2011, the proportion of women diagnosed with genital warts decreased significantly, from 11.5% to 0.85% for under-21-year-olds and from 11.3% to 3.1% for 21- to -30-year-olds. For heterosexual men, similar significant declines were noted, from 12.1% to 2.2% among those younger than 21 years and from 18.2% to 8.9% among those aged 21–30 years. There were no significant decreases in wart diagnoses for women or heterosexual men aged >30 years. For 235 women younger than 21 years who reported prior HPV vaccination, no genital wart diagnoses were made in 2011.

“This study shows that the proportion of young women diagnosed as having genital warts has continued to decline since the quadrivalent HPV vaccination program started in Australia in 2007,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including CSL Biotherapies, which funded the surveillance network and manufactures the vaccine.

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