Why You Should Vaccinate Against HPV

gardasilThe HPV vaccines have always been controversial. I believe a great deal of this has to do with a prudish attitude towards sex, that if people are catching HPV, they shoulda oughta known better and just said no to the nookie. I have expressed many times how incredibly foolish I consider this notion because people don’t say no. Facts are facts, and using a virus which causes potentially fatal cancers as a punishment for supposed immorality just doesn’t seem like a very virtuous position to take.

Harriet Hall has a fantastic article up at Science Based Medicine entitled Cunnilingus, Michael Douglas’s, Cancer, and the HPV Vaccine which offers some more food for thought on this particular topic. HPV, research has shown, isn’t just responsible for cervical cancer. There’s a whole lot more going on here, including throat cancer (which is markedly on the rise), anal cancers, and esophageal cancer to name a few. That’s a lot of cancer, and oral and anal sex with people with HPV is a significant problem.

Dr. Hall explains the particulars in greater detail, and I highly recommend reading her post (which I’ll link to again just to make sure you do) to get a fuller understanding of the particular cancers and their relation to strains of HPV, as well as the shattering of myths around the HPV vaccine.

The data is in. We know that HPV is a far more serious health concern that can be transmitted in more ways than simply unprotected winkie-to-hoohoo sex. We can tell our children all we like to avoid any contact with the genitals of the opposite sex, but we are working against too many factors, from peer pressure to biology, for that to be even remotely a sensible approach to fighting cancer. Are we really that cruel that we would threaten a series of dangerous and potentially terminal diseases towards the general public just to ensure that everyone is abstinent?

Jim

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About biguglyjim

Like a caterpillar that spins a coccoon and emerges as a walrus with a mohawk, Big Ugly Jim has become something unexpected. Raised a fine young Christian boy in the city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Jim began to question his teachings, first evaluating the wisdom of other religious and eventually realizing that none of them seemed any more accurate than any other, and not a one of them made a lick of sense. Today, Big Ugly Jim is a musician, a Business Analyst with Large Oil Company Whose Name Is Not Important, a music promoter with the Calgary Beer Core, a writer of fiction and non-fiction, a prick, an atheist, a father, an ex-husband, a role model, a horrifying vision in a red speedo (or at least he would be, if ever that happened which IT WOULD NOT), an announcer, and soon to be an officiator of weddings. Also, he's nice and does dishes. Madly enamoured with his partner, The Lovely Lady, Jim continues to live in Calgary, spreading his filthy doctrine of free, critical thinking and appreciation for music. His turn-ons include and are utterly limited to all that is The Lovely Lady. His turn-offs include people being shitty to each other, fundamentalism, and zebras. Who the hell do they think they are, really?

6 thoughts on “Why You Should Vaccinate Against HPV

  1. I have a close girlfriend who is currently on 6 month waiting cycles of “let’s wait and see if these cells turn into cancer by your next appt before we can do anything”…and I can say for certain that she wishes the vaccine were available when we were younger. Contrary to some belief, she is not a slut, wild, promiscuous or asking for it. Just a mom with 2 young kids that picked it up somewhere along the way of several committed relationships.

  2. I have known several women who have had HPV, particularly when they were young and when the disease wasn’t even known. A girl I knew had her first sexual encounter at sixteen, and it wasn’t long after that they found cancer in her cervix. She was told by her doctor at the time that before the age of 20, a woman’s body is still growing, and sexual contact can sometimes result in it growing wrong and developing cancer. She wasn’t a slut, she was a girl who thought she was in love with a boy who, from what I understand, wasn’t a slut either. And y’know what? Even if she was a slut, how does that deserve cancer? I just don’t understandt he logic.

  3. there is always talk about women and HPV, always mention of whether she was a slut or not….what is going on to deal with the fact MEN HAVE IT TOO?!? where are these women GETTING IT FROM?!?!?! DUH!!!!!i see NOTHING BEING DONE to help treat/vaccinate/educate men about HPV when they, too are obvious carriers of HPV!

  4. Yes, that is such a good point. Even if my friend were a slut, was promiscuous…that wouldn’t make it right that she has HPV and has to endure the waiting game.

  5. I don’t understand the whole “moral objection” thing to the HPV vaccine. A woman could be 100% faithful, only have one sexual partner and so and so and if the man she is faithful to contracts HPV somehow, now she is all of a sudden exposed to the risks associated with the virus through no fault of her own.Something else I recently found out is that they have actually found that the vaccines are effective even for women over the age of 26. When the vaccines first came out, that was the only data they had…for women into their 20s. Turns out, it is effective for all women and can help fight off the virus in women who have already been exposed.

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