The Hepatitis Vaccine
Hepatitis is inflammation and resultant damage of the liver. It is most frequently caused by the “Hepatitis Viruses”. There are several viruses in this family with the most common being Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. Hepatitis A is highly infectious and can be spread via contaminated food, water, or contact with an infected person. Hepatitis B is also highly infectious and it is spread through contact with infected bodily fluids including via sexual contact. Infection with either of these viruses can result in serious illness, cirrhosis, liver failure, liver cancer and sometimes death.
Fortunately, these diseases can be easily prevented by the vaccine for Hepatitis A and B. This vaccine has drastically reduced the incidence of these infections in the United States over the past 30 plus years and became mandatory for newborn children in 1991. It is a three injection series given at 0, 1 and 6 months and provides extremely reliable protection from these devastating infections.
If you were born prior to 1991 or if it has been more than 20 years since you were vaccinated for hepatitis, you should consider being vaccinated again.
The HPV Vaccine
The Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine is an incredibly important component of preventive health for both women and men due to the horrible health problems caused by the HPV family of viruses. Approximately 30 – 40 of the HPV viruses are transmitted sexually and they are the most common sexually transmitted infection in the world. They are the cause of genital warts and pre-cancerous and cancerous changes of the cervix, vulva, vagina and penis. HPV infections are also now the number 1 cause of head and neck cancers and anal cancer. By the age of 25, 80% – 90% of men and women will be exposed to one or more of these viruses. Fortunately, most infections resolve without creating problems, but when the infection does advance, the health problems can be serious.
The HPV vaccine is very important to help prevent these horrible HPV-caused diseases. It protects patients from 9 of the most common HPV strains which are responsible for 75% – 85% of the HPV infections that occur. It is a 3 injection series and is recommended for girls and boys between the ages of 9 and 26.
If you have questions about the HPV vaccine or if you want to receive it, please ask your Florida Woman Care of Jacksonville physician for more information during your visit.
The tDAP Vaccine
The TdAP vaccine protects you from Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis. Tetanus and Diphtheria are rare diseases in the United States due to this vaccine, but Pertussis has begun to recur at epidemic levels recently due to poor long-term protection in adults and to poor vaccine adherence in young children. Pertussis infection results in a bad and prolonged cough in adults, but it can be deadly in children. Infected adults are usually responsible for passing this infection to young children. The TdAP vaccine is highly effective in preventing these illnesses and is recommended every ten years for all women and men over the age of 20 to help eliminate this pertussis epidemic. It is also recommended for all women in every pregnancy between 26 and 36 weeks gestational age so that the baby will be born with protection from this dangerous infection.
With our vaccine program, Florida Woman Care of Jacksonville reinforces its commitment to providing the best in preventive care in order to optimize your long term health.