The HPV vaccine is normally given as a series of 2 injections into the upper arm. Pupils who get their first vaccination dose over the age of 15 will need to have 3 injections.
What vaccine will I get?
The GARDASIL vaccine is routinely used in Scotland. You can find the ingredients of the HPV vaccine in this patient information leaflet.
Where and when will I get the HPV vaccine?
The HPV vaccine is offered to all pupils in S1, at school. You'll be informed by your school when your immunisation is due.
How many doses of the HPV vaccine will I get?
The vaccine's offered in 2 or 3 doses over a period of 12 months, depending on what age you were when you received the first dose.
The first dose is offered to all pupils in S1 at secondary school. The second dose is usually offered in S2.
If you receive your first dose before you turn 15 years old, you'll only need 2 doses of the HPV vaccine. You'll be offered the second dose at least 6-12 months after the first.
If you receive your first dose after you turn 15 years old, you'll need 3 doses of the vaccine. You'll be offered the second dose at least 1 month after the first dose, and the third dose at least 3 months after the second dose.
Does the immunisation protect me from other sexually transmitted infections?
The HPV vaccine is designed to protect you against the 2 types of HPV that cause 75% of cervical cancer cases.
These 2 types of HPV also cause around:
- 90% of anal cancers
- 85% of head and neck cancers
- 78% of vaginal cancers
- 50% of penile cancers
- 25% of vulval cancers across the world.
The statistics on cancers caused by HPV are different from country to country.
The vaccine also protects against 2 other types of HPV. These cause around 90% of cases of genital warts.
However, having this immunisation won't protect you against any other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) such as chlamydia.