Why my kids get the HPV vaccine: A cervical cancer survivor’s story

http://youtu.be/XxizSTU_nzo As a cervical cancer survivor and parent to two sons, Linda Ryan advises other parents to vaccinate their kids against the human papillomavirus (HPV). She wishes the HPV vaccine had been available to her as an adolescent so she could have avoided cervical cancer, which is predominantly caused by HPV. As Linda tells her sons, Matthew (17) and Ethan (13), getting three rounds of the HPV vaccine is far better than enduring cancer and cancer treatment. In Linda’s case, that meant undergoing eight rounds of chemo for nine hours each time and missing out on a year of her kids’ lives. Though kids and teens can get the HPV vaccine up to age 26, the vaccine is most effective around age 11 or 12. That's when the immune system responds best to the HPV vaccine. “Vaccinating my sons so they don't have to tell their children they have cancer like I did seems like an easy decision to me,” Linda says. MD Anderson recommends that parents vaccinate both their sons and daughters against HPV. Giving the HPV vaccine to both boys and girls is the easiest way to prevent thousands of cases of oropharyngeal cancer, throat cancer, penile cancer, anal cancer, vulvar cancer, as well as cervical cancer. Read more about why Linda’s sons are getting the HPV vaccine: http://www2.mdanderson.org/cancerwise/2015/02/why-i-vaccinate-my-sons-against-hpv.html Learn more about the HPV vaccine: http://www2.mdanderson.org/cancerwise/2014/12/understanding-the-new-hpv-vaccine.html Listen to MD Anderson doctors discuss the cancer prevention benefits of the HPV vaccine in this podcast: http://www.mdanderson.org/newsroom/cancer-newsline/cancer-newsline-topics/2015/hpv-vaccine.html Request an appointment at MD Anderson: https://www4.mdanderson.org/contact/selfreferral/index.cfm #endcancer
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