What is HPV?


HPV stands for human papilloma(pap-ah-LO-mah) virus. It is isn’t the same as HIV. If you haven’t heard of it don’t feel bad. It was found in a study that 29% of women at a state university hadn’t heard of the term: human papilloma virus. That is 29% too many women unaware of a potentially deadly virus. The danger lies in cervical cancer. A bit frightening. Also, a small sample of people from the street were tested on their knowledge. These people were all were unaware of the virus which is the most commonly transmitted sexually transmitted infection (STI) or sexually transmitted disease (STD). If you think your infected or curious check out hpv symptoms.

It is most important for the college population to know about human papillomavirus. College students are at a much high probability of contracting the human papillomavirus than the general population. Other susceptible groups of people are those that consider themselves or are considered by society as “young people” and not “other people.” There are other viruses that are transmitted sexually such as herpes, HIV and hepatitis. There is a lot of STD awareness surrounding herpes, HIV and hepatitis. There should be more awareness of HPV. All three viruses are without absolute cures; however, recently (as of 2006) a pharmaceutical company known as Merck developed an HPV vaccine that is available to the public. There is some controversy surrounding the HPV vaccine.

Don’t be like them, become educated on this virus and safer because of it. Explore all the links and take in all the information, it is your health. Your health and safety is one of the most important things in life. In addition, by being aware you’ll help prevent the spreading of the virus. Due to the viruses’ link to cervical cancer it is especially important for women to be educated about the virus. There are more than forty strains of the virus that infect the genital areas, mouth and throat. There are about 200 different types of strains with many being asymptomatic or without producing symptoms that typically tell you something is wrong. Fortunately, due to the human body’s strong immune system, the virus will usually cure itself spontaneously within two years time; however this is not always the case. If you are wondering what an HPV infection can look like see the HPV pictures gallery.

The virus if present can be responsible for genital warts, warts in the throat known as recurrent respiratory papillomatosis or when in children, juvenile-onset papillomatosis. More importantly and more hazardous to your health is when the virus leads to cervical cancer and potentially other cancers of the vulva, vagina, penis, anus and oropharynx (back of the throat with base of tongue and tonsils). What about hpv testing?  If your a woman and reading this please see the section hpv in women.