The vaccine for HPV, called Gardasil, protects against 9 types of HPV (types 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58) that are linked to the majority of cases of cervical cancer and genital warts. The vaccine has also been shown to provide protection against penile and anal cancers, and, while studies have not yet been done, it is thought that the vaccine provides protection from oral cancers as well.
It is not used to treat HPV.
It is ideal to be vaccinated before you begin having sex, but it is not too late to get the vaccine if you have already been sexually active. The HPV vaccine is strongly recommended for people of all genders up to age 26.
For people aged 15 or older at the time of the first dose, Gardasil is given as a 3 dose injection. (If someone starts the series at ages 11-14, only two doses are now recommended.) The second dose is given 2 months after the first injection and the third dose is given 6 months after the first injection. You are able to receive all 3 injections in the series at University Health Services, even if you have had any of the doses given by a provider outside of Brown. You should receive all 3 doses to get the full benefits of the vaccine. If you have missed a dose, or have not followed the recommended schedule, contact your medical provider to get the next dose and to make a plan to complete the series. You will not need to repeat any doses that you have already received.
If you received your first and/or second dose with the prior generation 4-valent vaccine, you can get your remaining doses with the new 9-valent vaccine. If you have been fully vaccinated with the 4-valent HPV vaccine, you do not need to be re-vaccinated with the 9-valent, but you can discuss this with your medical provider if you have concerns or questions.
You can call 401.863-3953 to make an appointment at Health Services.