Q: What is the advantage to women if men get vaccinated?
A: Men are frequently carriers of the HPV virus. A carrier refers to a person that has an infection and sheds the virus which can then infect their partner(s). If men are vaccinated before they have gotten an HPV infection there is less of a chance of them acquiring it at a later date and infecting their female (and male) partner(s).
Q: Should men get vaccinated just so that they can decrease the chance of giving their female partners an HPV infection?
A: That is an important reason but not the only reason. Men should get vaccinated in order to minimize their own chances of getting an HHPV infection as well as HPV-related diseases, including cancers of the penis, anus, rectum, and the oropharyngal area. A man who is vaccinated also has a decreased chance of acquiring a new infection, and will therefore be less likely to infect their current and/or future partner(s). The advantages and multiple positives of getting an HPV vaccination will have a positive impact on their lives.
Q: Any other advantages for the man to get vaccinated?
A: The man who is vaccinated will be able to avoid the psychological aspect of having a sexually transmitted disease. He will avoid the embarrassment of the uncomfortable situation of needing to inform a current or future partner that he has or had an infection. Not getting the infection will allow him to avoid the hassle and time needed to set aside to visit doctors. and the cost of doing so.
Q: Is the HPV vaccine expensive?
A: The vaccine is not inexpensive, but is covered by insurance for men up to the age of 21-26 years of age. The long term expense, time, and the emotional and psychological hassles associated with an active and/or potentially latent HPV infection makes the cost of getting the vaccine appear to be inconsequential. The vaccine gives a person the best bang for the buck from the medical, social and psychological point of view.
Q: What kind of HPV-conditions can a man get?
A: Men can get genital warts as well as cancers of the penis, anus, rectum and oropharyngeal area.
Q: What is the most common HPV-related condition that a man can get?
A: The most frequently seen HPV-related condition that men can get are genital warts. Genital warts are usually caused by low risk HPV strains. HPV strains 6 and 11 are the most common HPV strains, and represent 90% of the causes of genital warts.
Q: What kind of cancers can a man get caused by HPV and which strains cause them?
A: In men, HPV causes cancers of the penis, anus and rectum that are associated with the high risk strains of HPV. HPV 16 and 18 represent about 70% of the HPV strains that cause these cancers. Cancers of the oropharyngeal region are also seen more frequently in men, and those cancers are caused almost exclusively by HPV 16 alone.