human papillomavirus vaccine (generic name)

It is used to prevent infections of two types of the human papillomavirus
(HYOO muhn pap uh LOH muh vahy ruhs vak SEEN)
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What is this medicine?

HUMAN PAPILLOMAVIRUS VACCINE (HYOO muhn pap uh LOH muh vahy ruhs vak SEEN) is a vaccine. It is used to prevent infections of two types of the human papillomavirus. This will lower your risk of getting cervical cancer and abnormal cervical lesions. You cannot get these diseases from the vaccine. This medicine does not treat cervical cancer.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • fever or infection
  • hemophilia
  • HIV infection or AIDS
  • immune system problems
  • low platelet count
  • an unusual reaction to Human Papillomavirus Vaccine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This vaccine is for injection in a muscle on your upper arm. It is given by a health care professional. You will be observed for 15 minutes after each dose. Sometimes, fainting happens after the vaccine is given. You may be asked to sit or lie down during the 15 minutes. Three doses are given. The second dose is given 1 month after the first dose. The last dose is given 5 months after the second dose.

A Vaccine Information Statement will be given before each vaccination. Read this sheet carefully each time. The sheet may change frequently.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 10 years of age for selected conditions, precautions do apply.

Overdosage: If you think you've taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

What if I miss a dose?

Keep appointments for follow-up (booster) doses as directed. It is important not to miss your dose. Call your doctor or health care professional if you are unable to keep an appointment.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • medicines that suppress your immune system like some medicines for cancer
  • steroid medicines like prednisone or cortisone
  • other vaccines

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

This vaccine may not fully protect everyone. This vaccine does not prevent all types of cervical cancer. Continue to have regular pelvic exams and cervical cancer screenings as directed by your doctor.

The Human Papillomavirus is a sexually transmitted disease. It can be passed by any kind of sexual activity that involves genital contact. The vaccine works best when given before you have any contact with the virus. Many people who have the virus do not have any signs or symptoms.

Tell your doctor or health care professional if you have any reaction or unusual symptom after getting the vaccine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (Report these to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome.):

  • diarrhea
  • fever
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • nausea, vomiting
  • redness, warmth, swelling, pain, or itching at site where injected
  • stomach pain

Where should I keep my medicine?

This vaccine is only given in a clinic, pharmacy, doctor's office, or other health care setting and will not be stored at home.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Last Updated: October 27, 2009
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