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Background: Human papilloma virus (HPV) infection is implicated in the cause of cervical cancer which is the second most common cancer in women worldwide. HPV vaccination is a primary prevention toolagainst HPV infection, thus the need to assess the knowledge, attitude and uptake of HPV vaccination among female medical and dental students.
Methodology: A descriptive cross sectional study was carried out among all undergraduatefemale medical and dental students in the University of Benin. Data was collected using a pretested, semi-structured, self-administered questionnaire. The questionnaires comprised ofsocio-demographic characteristics, knowledge of HPV vaccination, attitudes towards HPV vaccination and uptake of HPV vaccination
Results: Two hundred and eighty questionnaires were administered however only 215 returned their completed questionnaires giving a response rate of 76.7%.The mean age of respondents was 22.4 ± 3.0 years.Only about a third of the respondents (31.2%) had a good knowledge of HPV infection andvaccination. Age (p = 0.001), faculty (p = 0.014) and level of study (p = 0.014) was observed to be significant determinants of knowledge. A higher proportion of respondents (61.8%) had a positive attitude towards HPV vaccination while only a few (3.7%) had taken the HPV vaccine. Significant determinants of attitude towards HPV vaccination were age (p = 0.001), faculty (p = 0.014), level of study (p = 0.001) and knowledge (p = 0.031) of respondents. Uptake of HPV vaccination was significantly associated with attitude of respondents (p = 0.001).
Conclusion: The knowledge and uptake of HPV vaccination among these students was generally poor though most of them had positive attitude towards HPV vaccination. This emphasizes the need for educational interventions to improve knowledge which will in turn enhance uptake.
Keywords: Female, Human papilloma virus vaccine, Medical, Vaccination