Nav: Home

Parents ranked cancer prevention as number one provider reason for HPV vaccination

June 14, 2018

CHAPEL HILL - Parents ranked cancer prevention as the most compelling reason health care providers can give for recommending the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, according to a survey led by University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers.

The findings, published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, offer guidance as to what doctors and other health care providers should be emphasizing to parents when discussing vaccination for their children against HPV, a sexually transmitted virus that can cause oral, head and neck, genital and cervical cancers.

"Parents confirmed the advice from the CDC and other professional organizations, which is cancer prevention is the most important reason for HPV vaccination," said UNC Lineberger's Melissa B. Gilkey, PhD, assistant professor in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health. "Providers report giving a wide variety of reasons to vaccinate, but this study suggests what parents really want to hear about is cancer prevention. This was true even for parents who had relatively low confidence in adolescent vaccination."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 41,000 people are diagnosed with HPV-associated cancer in the United States each year. HPV vaccination could prevent most HPV-linked cancers, which include cancers of the throat, the cervix, and genitals. However, just 43 percent of adolescents were up-to-date on the HPV vaccine in the United States in 2016, according to the CDC. Studies have shown that a provider's recommendation is highly influential.

"Research has shown that a provider's recommendation is the single most important factor in whether parents decide to get their kids vaccinated," Gilkey said. "Public health organizations, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, are leading large-scale campaigns to improve provider communication about HPV vaccination. We're working to understand what the most powerful messages are to inform those ongoing interventions."

The researchers drew their findings from a survey of 1,177 adults in the United States with children between the ages 11 and 17. The parents were asked to rank, from best to worst, a list of reasons a doctor commonly use to encourage parents to consider vaccinating their child against HPV.

Parents said cancer prevention was the most persuasive reason for HPV vaccination. The prevention of a common infection, the vaccine's lasting benefits and its safety also scored high. Reasons that received low rankings included "it is a scientific breakthrough," and "I got it for my own child."

When the researchers compared the responses from parents who had low confidence in adolescent vaccines at the outset, they found these parents ranked messages very similarly to parents who had high confidence. "This should give providers confidence that leading with the idea of cancer prevention doesn't have to be targeted toward a particular type of parent," Gilkey said. "Cancer prevention is likely to be your best bet no matter who you're talking to."
-end-
In addition to Gilkey, other authors were Mo Zhou, Annie-Laurie McRee, Melanie L. Kornides and John F.P. Bridges.

The study was supported by the National Cancer Institute.

UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center

Related Cancer Articles:

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.
Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.
More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.
New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.
American Cancer Society outlines blueprint for cancer control in the 21st century
The American Cancer Society is outlining its vision for cancer control in the decades ahead in a series of articles that forms the basis of a national cancer control plan.
Oncotarget: Cancer pioneer employs physics to approach cancer in last research article
In the cover article of Tuesday's issue of Oncotarget, James Frost, MD, PhD, Kenneth Pienta, MD, and the late Donald Coffey, Ph.D., use a theory of physical and biophysical symmetry to derive a new conceptualization of cancer.
Health indicators for newborns of breast cancer survivors may vary by cancer type
In a study published in the International Journal of Cancer, researchers from the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center analyzed health indicators for children born to young breast cancer survivors in North Carolina.
Few women with history of breast cancer and ovarian cancer take a recommended genetic test
More than 80 percent of women living with a history of breast or ovarian cancer at high-risk of having a gene mutation have never taken the test that can detect it.
Radiotherapy for invasive breast cancer increases the risk of second primary lung cancer
East Asian female breast cancer patients receiving radiotherapy have a higher risk of developing second primary lung cancer.
More Cancer News and Cancer Current Events

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2019.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Risk
Why do we revere risk-takers, even when their actions terrify us? Why are some better at taking risks than others? This hour, TED speakers explore the alluring, dangerous, and calculated sides of risk. Guests include professional rock climber Alex Honnold, economist Mariana Mazzucato, psychology researcher Kashfia Rahman, structural engineer and bridge designer Ian Firth, and risk intelligence expert Dylan Evans.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#540 Specialize? Or Generalize?
Ever been called a "jack of all trades, master of none"? The world loves to elevate specialists, people who drill deep into a single topic. Those people are great. But there's a place for generalists too, argues David Epstein. Jacks of all trades are often more successful than specialists. And he's got science to back it up. We talk with Epstein about his latest book, "Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World".
Now Playing: Radiolab

Dolly Parton's America: Neon Moss
Today on Radiolab, we're bringing you the fourth episode of Jad's special series, Dolly Parton's America. In this episode, Jad goes back up the mountain to visit Dolly's actual Tennessee mountain home, where she tells stories about her first trips out of the holler. Back on the mountaintop, standing under the rain by the Little Pigeon River, the trip triggers memories of Jad's first visit to his father's childhood home, and opens the gateway to dizzying stories of music and migration. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.