HPV-vaccine may even help reduce number of pre-term birthsMarch 18th, 2009 - 1:15 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Mar 18 (ANI): Calculating the benefits of HPV (human papilloma virus)-vaccination, Norwegian scientists have found that it may even reduce the number of pre-term births.
Chronic HPV -infections can lead to cellular changes in the cervix that can be a pre-stage to cervical cancer.
Surgical treatment of these pre-stages gives an increased risk of pre-term birth in subsequent pregnancies.
And as the HPV-vaccine can prevent pre-stages of cervical, it can even prevent pre-term births.
In the new study, Katrine D. Sjoborg and Anne Eskild calculated how many pre-term deliveries could be avoided by systematic HPV-vaccination.
For the calculations, the researchers took into account the proportion of pregnant women treated with conisation (surgical removal of a part of cervix), proportion with pre-term births among women who have had conisation compared those who have not had it.
They also considered the proportion of conisations that could be prevented by HPV-vaccination, as well as the proportion of fertile women who are HPV-vaccinated.
Using figures from Europe and North-America, the study results indicated that if 2 percent of pregnant women are treated with conisation, between 60 and 220 pre-term births per 100 000 births could be caused by surgical treatment.
Nearly 60 percent of these may be prevented by the HPV-vaccine, assuming that vaccination coverage is 90 percent. This means that 35-128 pre-term births per 100 000 births could be avoided.
If 4 percent of pregnant women are treated with conisation, 70 to 257 pre-term births per 100 000 births could be avoided.
The study was not aimed to state an exact figure of how many pre-term births could be prevented by HPV-vaccination, but to illustrate potential benefits in this field.
Pre-term birth can cause serious conditions in the child. Every case that can be prevented could save suffering for each child and their family.
Still, there is a proven link between conisation and shorter pregnancy duration. HPV-vaccination can therefore have an important effect on prevention of extremely pre-term births.
The study has been published in Acta Obstretica et Gynecologica. (ANI)
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Tags: births, cellular changes, cervical cancer, cervix, deliveries, europe, exact figure, fertile women, hpv infections, hpv vaccination, hpv vaccine, human papilloma virus, north america, norwegian scientists, pregnant women, proportion, risk, subsequent pregnancies, vaccination coverage