Knowledge and acceptance of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) and HPV vaccination in adolescent boys worldwide: a systematic review

Gillian Prue, Gilla Shapiro, Ruth Maybin, Olinda Santin, Mark Lawler

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11 Citations (Scopus)
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To determine HPV and HPV vaccine awareness, knowledge and acceptance in male adolescents worldwide.


A mixed methods systematic review was conducted. In accordance with PRISMA guidelines, relevant literature was identified through an electronic database search using specified keywords from inception to September 2015. Non-interventional studies presented in English that assessed HPV knowledge and provided data on male adolescents were included. If available, data on HPV and HPV vaccine perceptions, attitudes and/or HPV vaccine acceptance were also extracted. All studies were critically appraised to provide an indication of methodological quality. Results were compiled using a convergent synthesis.


22 papers were included. The majority of studies were cross-sectional and conducted in the US and Europe. Across continents, regardless of a country’s HPV vaccination programme status, boys’ knowledge of HPV and/or HPV vaccination was generally low to moderate and significantly lower than female knowledge or awareness. There was a disagreement in the association of knowledge and vaccine acceptance, with higher knowledge not always being predictive of acceptance.


Comparison and synthesis of research concerning HPV knowledge and attitudes was made difficult due to the lack of universal definition of vaccine acceptance, and no universally accepted tool for its measurement or for the measurement of HPV knowledge. It is imperative that future research utilises consistent measures of HPV knowledge and attitudes to facilitate interpretation and comparison across studies internationally. Prospective longitudinal studies would be more informative providing data on factors that influenced the move from vaccine intention to uptake.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Cancer Policy
Early online date27 Sep 2016
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016


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