On behalf of Dr. Lawrence Jaeger and the medical staff at Central Park Medical Associates, we are extremely focused on providing optimum health care to everyone. As the leading private medical network provider network in New York City, we strongly encourage all men and women to educate themselves with the proper knowledge and to seek the necessary medical care for decreasing the incidences of medical illnesses, diseases, deaths and sickness.
In this blog, we’re discussing Top 10 HPV MYTHS (human papillomavirus). HPV is short for human papillomavirus.
HPV is a group of more than 150 related viruses. Each HPV virus in this large group is given a number which is called its HPV type. HPV is named for the warts (papillomas) some HPV types can cause. Some other HPV types can lead to cancer, especially cervical cancer. There are more than 40 HPV types that can infect the genital areas of males and females. But there are vaccines that can prevent infection with the most common types of HPV.
HOW IS HPV SPREAD?
You can get HPV by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the virus. It is most commonly spread during vaginal or anal sex. HPV can be passed even when an infected person has no signs or symptoms.
Anyone who is sexually active can get HPV, even if you have had sex with only one person. You also can develop symptoms years after you have sex with someone who is infected making it hard to know when you first became infected.
DOES HPV CAUSE HEALTH PROBLEMS?
In most cases, HPV goes away on its own and does not cause any health problems. But when HPV does not go away, it can cause health problems like genital warts and cancer.
Genital warts usually appear as a small bump or group of bumps in the genital area. They can be small or large, raised or flat, or shaped like a cauliflower. A healthcare provider can usually diagnose warts by looking at the genital area.
DOES HPV CAUSE CANCER?
HPV can cause cervical and other cancers cancers including cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis, or anus. It can also cause cancer in the back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils (called oropharyngeal cancer).
Cancer often takes years, even decades, to develop after a person gets HPV. The types of HPV that can cause genital warts are not the same as the types of HPV that can cause cancers.
There is no way to know which people who have HPV will develop cancer or other health problems. People with weak immune systems (including individuals with HIV/AIDS) may be less able to fight off HPV and more likely to develop health problems from it.
It’s the most common sexually transmitted infection in America. So, how much do you really know about it?
Top 10 HPV MYTHS – Genital Warts
- Myth: Only women get HPV.
- Myth: All strains of HPV cause cancer.
- Myth: If you don’t have sex, you won’t get HPV.
- Myth: Men can get screened for HPV.
- Myth: There are treatment options available for HPV.
- Myth: People with HPV always have symptoms.
- Myth: I got the HPV vaccine, so I don’t need to get Pap tests.
- Myth: Only people who have casual sex get STIs.
- Myth: An HPV diagnosis means someone has cheated.
- Myth: Warts aren’t contagious after treatment.
- Get vaccinated.
- Avoid any contact with the infected area.
- Always use condoms or dams and water-based lubricant.
- But remember, they only protect the area of skin that they cover.
- Before you have sex, talk with your partner about the importance of safer sex.
- Be open with your partner and make sure you or they don’t have any other sex partners.
- Limit your sex partners.
- Have regular STD/STI tests.