Utah Cancer Control Program A Unified Cancer Prevention Approach

HPV Vaccine Awareness

Is the HPV vaccine safe?

Numerous research studies have been conducted to make sure HPV vaccines were safe both before and after the vaccines were licensed. No serious safety concerns have been confirmed in the large safety studies that have been done since HPV vaccine became available in 2006.  All vaccines in the United States are required to go through extensive safety testing before they are licensed by FDA.  Once in use, they are continually monitored for safety and effectiveness.

Side Effects:  

Like any vaccine or medicine, HPV vaccines can cause side effects. The most common side effects are pain, redness or swelling in the arm where the shot was given, dizziness, fainting, nausea and headache.  HPV vaccination is typically not associated with any serious side effects.  The benefits of HPV vaccination far outweigh any potential risk of side effects.


HPV Disease Risks

HPV Vaccine Risks

1. Cervical Cancer

1. Pain, redness & tenderness at the injection site

2. Cancer of the vagina & vulva 2. Low grade fever
3. Cancers of the head & neck  
4. Cancers of the anus & penis  
5. Genital warts  
6. Can be fatal  


Reports of blood clots, strokes, heart attacks, chronic fatigue syndrome, infertility or premature ovarian failure, and even death have occurred after receipt of this vaccine; however, reviews of individual cases as well as controlled studies looking at groups of people who did and did not get the vaccine have shown that none of these problems were caused by the HPV vaccine.

Will the vaccine cause fertility issues?

No. There are no data that suggest getting HPV vaccine will have an effect on future fertility.  In fact, getting vaccinated and protecting against cervical cancer can help women have healthy pregnancies and have healthy babies.  Not getting the HPV vaccine leaves people vulnerable to HPV infection; for women, this could lead to cervical cancer.  The treatment of cervical cancer (hysterectomy, chemotherapy, and/or radiation, for example) could leave a woman unable to have children.  Even the treatment of cervical pre-cancers caused by HPV can cause preterm labor or problems at the time of delivery.  

Can the HPV vaccine cause cancer?

No.  Because the HPV vaccine is made using only a single protein from each type of the virus, it can’t cause HPV, and, therefore, it can’t cause cervical cancer or other cancers.


Where can I learn more?

For more information about HPV vaccines and the other vaccines for preteens and teens, talk to your child’s doctor or nurse. More information is also available at www.cdc.gov/hpv/ or 1-800-275-0659.

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