More than 20 million people are infected with HPV. There are no symptoms. There is no cure. Here are questions that may concern you.
HPV is now one of the most common STDs in the USA. HPV affects women between the ages of 13-59. Any woman can become infected. There are no tests available for men. The symptoms for the disease are barely visible. Below are some questions and answers that may effect many women.
How common is HPV?
HPV is one of the most common STDs around, a quarter of women living in America between the ages of 13-59 are infected with the disease. Approximately 20 million infected.
How do I become infected?
HPV is transmitted through genital contact. There are more than 100 different types of the disease, but there are 10 types most harmful to women. These 10 types can cause cervical cancer in women if left untreated.
How am I diagnosed?
A simple Pap test can detect pre-cancerous changes in the cervix caused by HPV.
What symptoms will I have/show?
Most people infected with HPV are not aware they are carrying the disease, there are slight symptoms which includes: visible genital warts, or precancerous changes in the cervix, vulva, anus, or penis which are detected through Pap tests. Most women are diagnosed with HPV on the basis of abnormal Pap results.
Can I be cured?
There is no cure for HPV, but in most women the infection goes away on its own.
I am pregnant, can I transmit HPV to my unborn child?
This is rare, but HPV can be transmitted to a baby during vaginal delivery. A baby infected or exposed to HPV will develop warts in the throat or voice box.
Are there any medications available?
Merck & CO., Inc. has launched Gardasil which is the only vaccine currently available that may help guard against diseases that are cause by HPV. However, Gardasil does not protect or prevent all types of cervical cancer. Gardasil is prescribed to girls between the ages of 13-26.
There are some side effects which includes:
pain, swelling, itching, and redness at the injection site