HPV-Human Papilloma Virus

By: Lauren G.

What is HPV?

  • The #1 most common STD in college students according to the CDC, and is actually also the most common STD of all
  • And STD is a sexually transmitted disease
  • There is no true way to completely avoid HPV, there are many different kinds, but not all can lead to cancer
  • 14 million people get HPV every year
  • More than 11,000 women get cervical cancer every year
  • You CAN lower your risk and likelihood of contracting this STD by following the following steps
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Signs and Symptoms

  • Genital Warts
  • Lesions on the tongue, tonsils, soft palate, larynx, and nose
  • Many people are asymptomatic
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Treatments

  • There is no actual treatment or cure, but it can go away on its own.
  • Warts can be treated with medication, but may go away on their own.
  • Cervical pre-cancer can be monitored and treated by getting regular Pap tests to catch it before it advances too far
  • Getting regular tests and scans can also prevent and treat other cancers caused by HPV

Prevention and Protection

  • Abstinence (vaginal, anal, or oral sex)
  • Use a condom
  • Limit your number of sexual partners
  • Get vaccinated--protects against types 16 and 18 which are high risk cancer types
  • Recommended vaccination is during the ages 11 and 12, but it can be given to men through age 21 and women through age 26
  • Get screened for cancers
  • Avoiding sexual activity at an early age
  • Get an HPV test, although there is no official or approved test, the American Cancer Society recommends getting them if they are available by your health care provider
  • Protect yourself from HIV/AIDS
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Complications

  • Genital warts
  • Cancer---cervical, vulvar, vaginal, penile, anal, mouth, throat, oropharyngeal
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