How Does It Work?Cervarix protects against certain types of HPV infections by stimulating the immune system to produce antibodies to fight off the HPV virus. HPV can be sexually transmitted and can cause female genital warts, male genital warts, cervical cancer, and various precancerous genital growths.
There are many different types of HPV, and Cervarix does not protect against all of them. However, it does protect against two important HPV types (Types 16 and 18). These two were chosen because they cause about 70 percent of cervical cancers. Cervarix is not designed to provide protection against the types of HPV most likely to cause genital warts.
It is important to note that Cervarix is not a live vaccine. It contains only a protein from the outer shell of the HPV virus and is not capable of causing HPV infection.
When and How to Take CervarixSome general considerations to keep in mind with Cervarix include the following:
- This vaccine is typically given as three separate doses.
- Cervarix is injected either into a muscle (intramuscularly) or just under the skin (subcutaneously), usually in the upper arm.
- People can be vaccinated if they have a minor illness, such as the common cold. However, the vaccine should be postponed if the individual is moderately or severely ill.
Dosing InformationThere is only one recommended dose for this vaccine, regardless of your age or weight (see Cervarix Dosage for more information).