The extent of and dangers from HPV-related conditions in men is still accumulating, compare to a long-standing accumulation of knowledge about the dangers of cervical cancer.
The evidence of the HPV vaccine in men is still limited.
The cost effectiveness of male immunization is not clear. Various studies have determined that HPV vaccination in the male population in order to decrease the consensus that cervical cancer is not a cost effective way to deal with the prevention of cervical cancer, which is better addressed by doing a full court press on vaccinating as many women as possible. The cost effectiveness of vaccinated men for the sake of protecting men against HPV-related conditions has not been carefully looked at.
There are certain populations at high risk of HPV infections (MSM) that would certainly benefit from HPV infection. The most effective way to reach this population is to vaccinate them at an early age. Most MSM do not have their first sexual contact until 18 or early 20’s, an age at which the effectiveness of the HPV vaccine is diminished as they have already had more exposure. The argument has been made that in order to protect the MSM population, global male HPV immunization should be implemented at an early age. It is noteworthy that vaccination to men has only been licensed and recommended in a few developed countries, in contrast female vaccinations are recommended in more than 120 countries.
The major considerations that favor male vaccination are:
1. In populations where the vaccination covers women is lower than 70%, the vaccination of men will have a herd immunity effect to decrease the exposure of women to HPV.
2. A significant decrease in genital warts in both heterosexual men and MSM would be expected if the quadrivalent vaccine is used.
3. Decrease in HPV-related cancers in men may be expected after widespread HPV vaccination in men (anal or rectal cancers, oropharyngeal cancers, cancer of the penis).
4. A balanced approach towards vaccination in order to protect both men and women, and not just to target and help protect the health of women alone.
HPV vaccine in men prevents external genital warts, anal HPV infections and persistent infections as well as early anal cancers in a group of men that have sex with men (MSM).