Join the fight against
certain HPV cancers
Be a warrior, not a worrier
Website developed, funded and provided by MSD. It is intended to provide general educational information and does not take the place of professional medical advice.
The power to help prevent HPV is in your hands.
What is HPV?
Human papillomavirus, or HPV, will infect most people at some point in their lives, making HPV the most common sexually transmitted infection, or STI, among males and females of all ages.
HPV is a common virus that can affect both boys and girls. It is passed via skin-to-skin contact and is often found on the fingers, hands, mouth and genitals.
HPV is often symptomless, and the body will usually fight it off itself. However, this is not always the case.
While some HPV types are harmless, other types can cause damage to cells that may cause abnormal growth, which can lead to:
- Genital warts
- Cervical cancer
- Anal cancer
Boys and girls, take up arms against HPV
Vaccination against HPV can help prevent infections, meaning you can defend yourself against damage to cells that can turn into certain cancers or genital warts.
Look out for more information from your school.
You do not have to be vaccinated against HPV if you do not want to, but it is a good idea to discuss any questions or concerns with:
- Your parents/carers
- The school immunisation team
- Your GP or practice nurse
Why do I need to be vaccinated now?
What else do I need to know?
vaccination against HPV worldwide between 2006 and 2022.
What about side effects?
As with any vaccines and medicines, HPV vaccinations may cause side effects which affect people differently. Some people don’t have any side effects after HPV vaccination.
The most common side effects are:
- Redness, swelling or pain at the site of injection
Some people might get:
- Bruising or itching at the site of the injection
- A high temperature or feeling hot and shivery
- Feeling sick (nausea)
- Pain in the arms, hands, fingers, legs, feet or toes