Document Type : Research Article


Department of Sociology and Social Planning, Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran


Background: Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is one of the most prevalent sexually transmitted diseases that could lead to cervical cancer. The current study aimed to assess the awareness of young girls about HPV and the relevant current sources of information about HPV. The present work also investigated the social factors related to young girls’ awareness of HPV.
Method: Methodologically, this was a cross-sectional study. The sample population was 303 single girls living in Shiraz, Iran. We used quota sampling. The data collection was carried out during October to November 2018. Data gathering tool included a two-part questionnaire: demographic information and HPV awareness measurement questionnaire. The validity of HPV awareness measurement questionnaire was confirmed by experts and its reliability was also assessed with Cronbach’s alpha coefficient of 0.942. We analyzed the data via descriptive and inferential statistics in SPSS version 21.
Results: The findings of the present research showed that the participants’ mean awareness of HPV was 5.84 out of 23. A total of 48.5% of the respondents had information about HPV prior to this study, among which the awareness score was 10.12. There was a significant relationship between education level (p <0.001), monthly income, type of occupation (p <0.001), and field of study (p <0.001) with HPV awareness.
Conclusion: Considering low awareness of girls about HPV, cultural, health, and governmental institutions, as well as non-profit organizations, need to make efforts to educate and inform the public about HPV and its transmission routes, which may result in the reduction of HPV-related diseases, including cervical cancer.


1. Mohseni M. Medical Sociology. Tehran, Iran: Tahoory Publishing; 2015. ## 2. Masoudnia E. Medical Sociology. Tehran, Iran: University of Tehran Press; 2010. ## 3. World Health Organization. Sexual health; 2017. Available from: 4. Goldman MB, Troisi R, Rexrode KM. Women and Health. Elsevier Science; 2012. ## 5. World Health Organization. Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs); 2015. Available from: 6. World Health Organization. Human papillomavirus (HPV) and cervical cancer; 2018. Available from: ## 7. Cobo F. Human Papillomavirus Infections: From the Laboratory to Clinical Practice. Elsevier Science; 2012. ## 8. Jones RE, Lopez KH. Human Reproductive Biology: Elsevier Science; 2013. ## 9. Onon TS. History of human papillomavirus, warts and cancer: What do we know today? Best Pract Res Clin Obstet Gynaecol. 2011;25(5):565-74. doi: 10.1016/j.bpobgyn.2011.05.001. PubMed PMID: 21708487. ## 10. Payne S. Viruses: From Understanding to Investigation. Elsevier Science; 2017. ## 11. de Sanjosé S, Brotons M, Pavón MA. The natural history of human papillomavirus infection. Best Pract Res Clin Obstet Gynaecol. 2018;47:2-13. doi: 10.1016/j.bpobgyn.2017.08.015. PubMed PMID: 28964706. ## 12. Sohrabi A, Hajia M, Jamali F, Kharazi F. Is incidence of multiple HPV genotypes rising in genital infections? J Infect Public Health. 2017;10(6):730-733. doi: 10.1016/j.jiph.2016.10.006. PubMed PMID: 28215919. ## 13. World Health Organization. WHO Director-General calls for all countries to take action to help end the suffering caused by cervical cancer; 2018. Available from: 14. Sánchez-López MP, Limiñana-Gras RM. The Psychology of Gender and Health: Conceptual and Applied Global Concerns. Elsevier Science; 2017. doi: 10.1097/nmd.0000000000000802. ## 15. Abbott P, Wallace C. An Introduction to Sociology: Feminist Perspective. Tehran, Iran: Ney Publication.; 2013. ## 16. Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA). How much does cancer's treatment cost?; 2018 Available from: ## 17. World Health Organization. Cancer; 2018. Available from: 18. Adam P, Herzlich C. Sociologie de la maladie et de la médecine NP. Tehran, Iran: Ney Publication; 2017. ## 19. Safari M, Shojaeizadeh D. Principles and foundations of health promotion and education. Tehran, Iran: Samat Publication; 2014. ## 20. Zarghi A, Dehdari T, Ramezankhani G. Basics of Health Promotion. Tehran, Iran: Nazari Publication; 2010. ## 21. Safari M, Shojaeizadeh D, Ghofranipoor F, Heydarnia A, Pakpoor A. Health Educatio and Promotion Theories, Models and Methods. Tehran, Iran: Sobhan Publication; 2018. ## 22. Didarloo A, Shojaeizadeh D, Mohamadian H. Health promotion planning based on behavioral change models. Tehran, Iran: Sobhan Publication; 2014. ## 23. Statistical Center of Iran. Population and Housing Census; 2016. Available from: 24. Westland JC. Lower bounds on sample size in structural equation modeling. Electron. Commer. Res. Appl. 2010;9(6):476-87. doi: 10.1016/j.elerap.2010.07.003. ## 25. Waller J, Ostini R, Marlow LA, McCaffery K, Zimet G. Validation of a measure of knowledge about human papillomavirus (HPV) using item response theory and classical test theory. Prev Med. 2013;56(1):35-40. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2012.10.028. PubMed PMID: 23142106. ## 26. Rutherford A. ANOVA and ANCOVA: a GLM approach: John Wiley & Sons; 2011. doi: 10.1002/9781118491683. ## 27. DeHaro Y. HPV knowledge, attitude and awareness: A study of Hispanic women. California State University, Long Beach; 2013. ## 28. Marlow LA, Zimet GD, McCaffery KJ, Ostini R, Waller J. Knowledge of human papillomavirus (HPV) and HPV vaccination: an international comparison. Vaccine. 2013;31(5):763-9. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.11.083. PubMed PMID: 23246310. ## 29. Aslani A, Khosravi A. Investigating Health Belief model component about sexual and reproductive health in college female students. Journal of Health Literacy. 2016;1(1):39-45. Persian. ## 30. Farazmand P, Etemad K, Keshavarz N, Farazmand K. Assessment of female students’ knowledge and attitude towards sexually transmitted infections in Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, 2015. Journal of Health in the Field. 2016;4(3):28-35. Perisan. ## 31. Asti P, Rashno S, Anbari Kh. Survey of the Knowledge and Attitude of University Student of Lorestsn University of Medical Sciences about Reproductive Health. Aflak. 2016;9(30):11-9. Persian. ## 32. Mazloomy Mahmoudabad S, Rahaei Z, Mirzaei Alavijeh M, Soltanei T, Bakhshi Z, Shadkam V. The survey of knowledge and attitude of university students on reproductive health in the city of Yazd in 2010. TB. 2012;10(3):139-49. Persian. ## 33. Khan TM, Buksh MA, Rehman IU, Saleem A. Knowledge, attitudes, and perception towards human papillomavirus among university students in Pakistan. Papillomavirus Res. 2016;2:122-127. doi: 10.1016/j.pvr.2016.06.001. PubMed PMID: 29074171; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5886891. ## 34. Bowyer HL, Marlow LAV, Hibbitts S, Pollock KG, Waller J. Knowledge and awareness of HPV and the HPV vaccine among young women in the first routinely vaccinated cohort in England. Vaccine. 2013;31(7):1051-6. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2012.12.038. PubMed PMID: 23277094. ## 35. Makwe CC, Anorlu RI, Odeyemi KA. Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and vaccines: knowledge, attitude and perception among female students at the University of Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria. J Epidemiol Glob Health. 2012;2(4):199-206. doi: 10.1016/j.jegh.2012.11.001. PubMed PMID: 23856501; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7320323. ## 36. Chen L, Song Y, Ruan G, Zhang Q, Lin F, Zhang J, et al. Knowledge and attitudes regarding HPV and vaccination among Chinese women aged 20 to 35 years in Fujian province: a cross-sectional study. Cancer Control. 2018;25(1):1073274818775356. doi: 10.1177/1073274818775356. PubMed PMID: 29761723; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6028175. ## 37. Unger Z, Maitra A, Kohn J, Devaskar S, Stern L, Patel A. Knowledge of HPV and HPV vaccine among women ages 19 to 26. Womens Health Issues. 2015;25(5):458-62. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2015.06.003. PubMed PMID: 26212317. ##