Saturday, October 13, 2012

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

I have HPV. Is my life over?

No, your life is not over. It will be OK.
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is an extremely common sexually transmitted infection. There are dozens of forms of HPV, but not all of them cause disease. Some forms of HPV cause cervical cancer, and some forms cause genital warts. Other forms seem to cause no disease at all.

Why is HPV important?
HPV causes almost 100% of cervical cancer. If we can prevent HPV, we can prevent cervical cancer.

How did I get diagnosed with HPV?
Most likely, the diagnosis occurred during a Pap smear.

For years, we have known that cervical cancer is almost entirely preventable. When a woman has HPV, it takes years to cause problems, and if caught before becoming actual cancer, it can be treated. That's why we do Pap smears regularly. Pap smears are a light scraping of the cervix that gently brushes off some of the cells. Those cells are examined by a pathologist to determine if they are abnormal or normal. If normal, the woman can continue her regular screening. If abnormal, they must be investigated further.

How do I know if my cervix has abnormal cells?
The abnormal readings that predict cervical cancer are called cervical dysplasia, meaning that the cells of the cervix have been altered by the presence of HPV. These readings can be either LGSIL (low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions) or HGSIL (high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions). The higher the grade, the more abnormal the cells, and the closer to cancer it is. However, these LGSIL and HGSIL do not mean that cancer is present, only that abnormalities are present that may lead to cancer. When a pap test shows LGSIL or HGSIL, this means that HPV is definitely present, so there is no need to do a specific HPV test. (More on abnormal Pap testing in a later blog post).

HPV --> LGSIL (low grade) --> HGSIL (high grade) --> Cancer

A third abnormal finding that may occur is called ASCUS (atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance). This means that the cells looked a little abnormal, but not quite LGSIL or HGSIL, and it was hard to tell whether their appearance indicated dysplasia or not. Until HPV testing, it was very hard to know what to do with ASCUS pap readings. Nowadays, we can test for HPV in the settings of ASCUS. If HPV is positive, then we know that there may be precancerous changes, and so we should treat that as an abnormal pap. If HPV is negative, then the woman cannot have dysplasia, and we can treat that as a normal pap.

Sometimes HPV testing can be done even when the Pap smear is negative. This is one possible method of screening available to women who are 30 years of age and older. You can talk to your doctor about what screening method is right for you.

Do I have an STD for life now?
Not necessarily. In some people, the HPV sticks around for years, and that's how it creates abnormal cells. However, many people, especially young people, acquire and eliminate HPV rapidly before it causes any damage. That's why HPV testing is not as useful in women under 30 - because they can acquire and eliminate HPV so quickly that a positive test doesn't mean much. However, in all women, including women under 30, cervical dysplasia does not disappear quickly, and does need to be followed up. That's why Pap smears are done in even young women.

Can I prevent HPV?
Yes. HPV is sexually transmitted, so the only thing that puts you at risk is having sex. The best protection is abstinence, but if you are sexually active, using condoms is the best way to prevent HPV. HPV is not usually acquired outside of sexual intercourse, so you can't get it from a toilet seat (which people often wonder).
Since men are not tested for HPV, routine STD testing will not identify whether your male partner has HPV. Therefore, it's important to always get pap smears, even if you are monogamous and/or have only had 1 partner.
There is also a vaccine against HPV. It is only partially effective, which means that you still need pap smears, but your risk of having an abnormal Pap smear is much lower, and that's great. Women aged 26 and younger are eligible for the HPV vaccine. (There's a good reason for that. I'll address it in a future post).


Nancy Kathlene said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sangeeta Singh said...

Thanks for sharing good information Human Papilloma virus(HPV) Infection

Lê Trang said...

Thank you for taking the time to help others in understanding HPV.
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Phạm Hương said...

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Phạm Hương said...

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LATIFA said...

I found out, that taking herbal treatment is the best to get rid of hpv as soon as i feel the symptoms of hpv is appearing, i took the healing process, by contacting Dr abu for natural treatment it works wonders, amazingly ever since I had the herbal treatment i have not feel these horrible disease anymore and my doc told me the virus is gone, i am glad i finally got cured out from this horrible disease. every hpv or herpes patients should also get in touch with this herbalist Dr to get ride of these disease forever his email address;

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rebecca callahan said...

My name is Rebecca Callahan 34 years old i contacted the Human papilloma virus infection/HPV,my husband left me because of this virus and i was unable to get birth,i was really passing through a lot because i tried every angles doctor prescribe to me yet nothing happened,i almost gave up on my life,on a faithful day i decided to check on the internet to see if there will be any means because i was really ready to spend my last cent on this my condition because i do believe my health is more important than anything.
During my research i saw a lady from Canada posted a link to a blog introducing Dr Abumere on how he helped her cure this virus through his natural organic medicine so i decided to give a tho i knew i tried every means,so i purchase the herbal medicine without wasting any time,i was using it as instructed,during the usage i start to notice my body is been release with the itch that i normally occur and i was very happy because it was embarrassing,after using the herbal medicine for three good weeks i decided to go for a test just as the doctor said and i discovered that i was no longer infected with this virus.
Here are the information to contact this doctor /

Maria Benson said...


I'm so happy and thankful to the great Dr Akuna for making me a free woman from herpes virus. previously i met with one man and we had sex and condom broke and after that he told me he had a Genital Warts virus. i was mad i broke up with him and was looking for a way to help myself. i met a herbal Dr in India and he gave me medicine. but at the end of the period nothing happened. i was fed up of trying thinking they are all the same fake doctors. i was wrong. until one very evening i reading through a (Grace church guestbook) then i saw thousand of amazing testimonies and i was surprise. but i wrote to him and he replied telling me how i can get his medicine after which i receive and used for 2weeks and was confirm by the same doctor who first tested me positive. Now confirm there is no trace of any disease in me. behold i was negative. i am writing to spread my experience with Dr Akuna and i wish you will also do the same or his website: or his Mobil:+2348154625070

Sindi Moloi said...

I was not really having a problem breathing at first. My throat was burning; I thought I had strep throat. I had pain in my neck, and there was swelling around my collar bone. The first doctor I went to said he did not know why there was swelling. He gave me antibiotics and told me that if the swelling was not better to come back in two weeks. I went back in two weeks and he said he did not know what was wrong. Since I do not have insurance, I went to a hospital emergency room, and they said I have COPD.The disease does not improve. My "good days" are far and few these days. My dad and his dad died from this. I am only writing this to inform others that nothing was really working to help my condition.I started on COPD herbal formula i ordered from Health Herbal Clinic,i read reviews from other previous patients who used the herbal formula, my symptoms totally declined over a 5 weeks use of the COPD natural herbal formula. i am now doing very well, my lungs are totally repaired!! Visit there website www. healthherbalclinic. net