Factors Correlating Perceptions of HPV and Vaccine Uptake among High School Students
Background: Human papillomavirus (HPV) is arguably the most prevalent sexually transmitted infection, and has been linked to a variety of health complications including cervical cancer, anal cancer, and anogenital warts. The HPV vaccine can prevent these health complications, but few studies have investigated the specific factors that impact HPV vaccine uptake. Methods: Two hundred seventy-five male and female high school students were surveyed in an ethnically diverse school district in southern California regarding HPV vaccine uptake and perceptions. Results: Less than one third of students reported their physician had discussed HPV vaccine with them, and fewer still for males (p<0.01). Students who did discuss HPV vaccination with their physician were significantly more likely to get vaccinated (p<0.01). Conclusion: These findings suggest the merit of the physician taking on a more active role during office visits to promote knowledge of HPV and HPV vaccine to all youth in this age group.