CDC: Too Few Male Adolescents Receiving HPV Vaccine

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CDC: Too Few Male Adolescents Receiving HPV Vaccine
CDC: Too Few Male Adolescents Receiving HPV Vaccine

(HealthDay News) — Most male adolescents in the United States aren't receiving the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine alongside their other scheduled inoculations, largely because doctors fail to recommend it or adequately explain its benefits to parents, according to a report published online Oct. 26 in Pediatrics.

Parents most often don't get the HPV vaccine for their boys because their health care provider didn't recommend it, according to researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That reason was given by 24 percent of parents whose 13- to 17-year-old sons had not received the shots, when asked as part of the CDC's annual survey on teen vaccinations.

Parents also commonly cite a lack of understanding about the vaccine, said report coauthor Shannon Stokley, M.P.H., Ph.D., associate director of science at the CDC's immunization services division. About 19 percent of parents felt the vaccine was not needed, 16 percent said they didn't know enough about it, and 7 percent had safety concerns, according to the report.

"We need to work with health care providers so they are making strong recommendations and communicating with their patients about the need for this vaccine," Stokley told HealthDay.

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