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Value Health. 2009 Jul-Aug;12(5):697-707. doi: 10.1111/j.1524-4733.2009.00512.x.

Age-based programs for vaccination against HPV.

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Merck Research Laboratories, Merck & Co., Inc., NorthWales, PA, USA.



The risk of infection with human papillomavirus (HPV) increases with age. Answering the question of which age groups are appropriate to target for catch-up vaccination with the newly licensed quadrivalent HPV vaccine (types 6/11/16/18) will be important for developing vaccine policy recommendations.


To assess the value of varying female HPV vaccination strategies by specific age groups of a catch-up program in the United States.


The authors used previously published mathematical population dynamic model and cost-utility analysis to evaluate the public health impact and cost-effectiveness of alternative quadrivalent HPV (6/11/16/18) vaccination strategies. The model simulates heterosexual transmission of HPV infection and occurrence of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), cervical cancer, and external genital warts in an age-structured population stratified by sex and sexual activity groups. The cost-utility analysis estimates the cost of vaccination, screening, diagnosis, and treatment of HPV diseases, and quality-adjusted survival.


Compared with the current screening practices, vaccinating girls and women ages 12 to 24 years was the most effective strategy, reducing the number of HPV6/11/16/18-related genital warts, CIN grades 2 and 3, and cervical cancer cases among women in the next 25 years by 3,049,285, 1,399,935, and 30,021; respectively. The incremental cost-effectiveness ratio of this strategy when compared with vaccinating girls and women ages 12 to 19 years was $10,986 per quality-adjusted life-year gained. CONCLUSION;: Relative to other commonly accepted health-care programs, vaccinating girls and women ages 12 to 24 years appears cost-effective.

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