Human papillomavirus vaccination rates in adolescents with cerebral palsy compared to the general population

J Pediatr Rehabil Med. 2022;15(1):83-90. doi: 10.3233/PRM-210038.


Purpose: To determine whether adolescents with cerebral palsy (CP) initiate and are up-to-date with the human papillomavirus (HPV) immunization series compared to adolescents in the general population.

Methods: Data on initiation and up-to-date status of the HPV series were collected on adolescents with CP aged 13-17 years old (n = 74) via retrospective medical record review and compared to 616 age-matched peers from the National Immunization Survey, Teen 2019. Analysis by gender, Gross Motor Functional Classification System (GMFCS) level, and ambulatory status was performed in the CP group.

Results: Adolescents with CP were three times less likely to start (p < 0.001) and two times less likely to be up-to-date (p = 0.004) with the HPV immunization series compared to age-matched peers. When the HPV immunization series was initiated in adolescents with CP, these adolescents were as likely to complete the series (p = 0.400), with 83.3% being up-to-date. In those with CP, there was no statistical difference in status of the HPV immunization series when comparing gender, GMFCS level, or ambulatory status.

Conclusion: Adolescents with CP were less likely to start the HPV immunization series; however, they were as likely to be up-to-date with the series if it was initiated. This presents an opportunity for pediatric physiatrists to help reduce the disparity.

Keywords: Cerebral palsy; cancer prevention; human papillomavirus; immunization; pediatric; vaccination.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Alphapapillomavirus*
  • Cerebral Palsy*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Immunization
  • Papillomavirus Infections* / epidemiology
  • Papillomavirus Infections* / prevention & control
  • Papillomavirus Vaccines* / therapeutic use
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Vaccination


  • Papillomavirus Vaccines