HPV stands for human papillomavirus. HPV is usually harmless and goes away by itself, but some types can lead to cancer or genital warts.
Here are 10 things about HPV.
1. HPV is incredibly common.
and It is estimated that 8 out of 10 people will get HPV at some point in their lifetime
2. Next… How is HPV spread?
HPV is one of the most common STI and is spread through genital or skin-to-skin contact. The virus can be spread even when no symptoms are evident.
3. The third point is that HPV doesn’t necessarily stay with you forever.
Patients commonly assume that HPV is a lifelong infection that will stay with them always. Most HPV infections clear up on their own and do not cause any problems. However, overtime persistent infection by certain HPV types can cause cancer and other diseases such as warts.
4. There are many strains of the virus.
HPV is not just one virus, but consists of over hundreds straina . Each virus is labeled with a number to distinguish it from the others, and different viruses can target different areas of the body, causing differentdiseases in humans.
HPV is most commonly associated with a risk for certain cancers, including cervical cancer, or oral cancers which involves, the base of the tongue or tonsils.
5. Next in Cervical cancer
HPV causes more than 99% of cervical cancer cases and Approximately 400 new cervical cancer cases are diagnosed annually in Singapore.
Cervical cancer ranks* as the 8th leading cause of female cancer in Singapore.
6. In Detection of HPV
A pap smear test is a cervical cancer screening tool that is commonly use to detect cervical cancer or pre-cancerous changes in the cervix.
A more sensitive test like the HPV DNA test can be used to detect certain high risk strains of HPV that can lead to cervical cancer
7. HPV in Men
8. There Is Also a Vaccine that Can Protect You
The HPV vaccine has been shown to be highly effective in protecting people against cervical cancer and warts..
Individuals already infected with HPV should still get vaccinated because the vaccine may protect against additional strains of hpv. However, for maximum benefit, vaccination should occur before an individual becomes exposed to the virus.
Thus it is recommended for preteens to get the vaccine at an early age.
Recently the US Food and Drug Administration expanded its approval of the HPV vaccine to include men and women up to 45 years old As an effort to protect more people from several types of cancer caused by HPV.
9. After HPV Vaccination…
Women should continue to get regular Pap screenings because the vaccine though reduces risk of cervical cancer, does not protect against all HPV types.
10. To Sum Up HPV
The best thing you can do is stay proactive and look after your well-being.
“HPV is something both women and men should be aware and well-informed about, protecting yourself and your loved ones,”