The Perceptions for Hong Kong Male Students Refusing HPV Vaccination: An Exploratory Study

Keung Sum Chan, Lai Hang Wong
2019 Journal of Biosciences and Medicines  
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a group of common viruses that can cause a sexually transmitted infection (STI). People with HPV infection can be susceptible to cervical cancer, anogenital warts, and another HPV-related disease. Although the HPV infection can be prevented by HPV vaccination, the vaccination rate in Hong Kong is relatively low particular in males comparing to other countries. Study design: An exploratory qualitative approach was adopted. Aim: This study attempted to explore the
more » ... ceptions of male college students refusing HPV vaccination in Hong Kong. Methods: A total of 20 male college students participated in the unstructured interview with audio-tape recording and field-notes done to explore their perceptions refusing HPV vaccination. Content analysis was utilized to extract significant themes and sub-themes. Results: Six major themes were identified including a lack of perceived risk, knowledge deficit, inadequate promotion, a high price of the HPV vaccine, inconvenience to receive the HPV vaccine and peer influence. Conclusion: Exploring the perceptions for Hong Kong male college students refusing HPV vaccination could provide essential information to the local government to establish corresponding health campaign for males to increase receiving HPV vaccination for curbing the HPV-related diseases. tive agent leading to cervical cancer, anogenital warts, and another HPV-related disease. More than 270,000 deaths from cervical cancer are estimated worldwide every year [2]. In the United States, there were 42.5% adults aged 18 -59 years have genital infection with any HPV type during 2013-2014 and 66% of adults having cervical cancers with HPV type 16 and 18 [3]. Besides the United States, cervical cancer has been the seventh commonest cancer among females in Hong Kong [4]. 500 new cases of cervical cancer were diagnosed in 2015 and the incidence rate of having cervical cancer was 12.7 per 100,000 female population [5]. Both men and women have a chance of having HPV infection through sexual contact such as vaginal, anal or oral sex with persons having HPV [3] [6]. Most HPV infections do not cause symptoms or diseases and clear on their own. Nonetheless, genital warts and respiratory papillomatosis can be caused by non-cancer causing types of HPV such as types 6 and 11 [2]. Moreover, HPV can cause cancers including cancers of vulva, vagina, penis or anus [3]. People persistently infected with types 16 and 18 HPV may develop cervical cancer [2]. Despite HPV infection posing a huge impact on health, there are precautionary measures to curb or lower chances of getting HPV infections, which are the cervical screening test and HPV vaccination. The cervical screening test is to detect abnormal cells in the cervix at an early stage [7] and HPV vaccines protect against HPV-related cancers or diseases [3]. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2017), all 11 to 12-year-old boys and girls start to receive the HPV vaccines and females and males can get the catch-up vaccine until the age of 26 and 21, respectively. Recently, there are 3 registered HPV vaccines protecting from the age of 9 years which are 2-valent vaccine only for female (HPV type 16 and 18), 4-valent vaccine suitable for both sex (HPV type 6, 11, 16 and 18) and 9-valent vaccine for both sex (HPV type 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58) in Hong Kong [8] . The price of the HPV vaccine is around HK$1500 -1700 per dose currently, excluding the medical staffs' fee [9] . There were 24.4% females under 18 getting HPV vaccine [10] . Although there are safe and effective HPV vaccines, the HPV vaccination rate in Hong Kong is lower than that in other countries. Literature Review A number of studies have investigated attitude, acceptability, and knowledge of HPV vaccination among university students. Hong Kong females deemed that it was critical to be vaccinated against HPV-caused disease before having sex [11] . Compared with the United States, the HPV vaccination rate among female was relatively low in Hong Kong. Several lines of evidence have shown that the cost of HPV vaccines and effectiveness of vaccine could be the major barriers to get HPV vaccinated among female adolescent [11] [12] [13] [14]. Apart from the cost, for parents, the barrier of getting HPV vaccinated included fear of side effects of HPV vaccination and concerning about encouraging sexual activity [15]. Some females were afraid of being label sexually active [10].
doi:10.4236/jbm.2019.75011 fatcat:iaopwfdplrephewpgx2ciwxhry