What is an HPV Infection?
HPV (Human PapillomaVirus) is a highly contagious and insidious microorganism that causes warts in the genital area and cervical cancer. The disease is recurrent. It can become chronic in some cases, and can recur repeatedly when immunity is weak.
Why is HPV Infection important?
In recent years, an extremely rapid increase has been observed in the incidence of HPV infections. This rapid increase is a result of the very easy transmission of the virus. HPV causes genital warts, which are the most common sexually transmitted disease. A sexually active woman has a 75% chance of being infected with HPV in her lifetime.
My smear test results are normal. Can I still have HPV?
Even if your smear test results are normal, your probability of being infected with HPV is 25%, if you are under 35 years of age. If there is a problem in your smear test results, your probability of carrying HPV is 50.2%.
How Can I Realize that I have an HPV Infection?
Most of the infections within this scope are asymptomatic or show mild symptoms. When they show symptoms, the symptom is usually in the form of a wart in the genital area. The most vicious feature of this virus is that it settles in the cervix and insidiously causes cervical cancer, without showing symptoms in the form of warts.
With the PCR method, we can see whether you carry the HPV by taking a swab from the cervix, like in the smear test procedure. While detecting the DNA of the virus, we can also identify the type of virus that you carry. If you have Type 6 and Type 11, they only cause genital warts and they are hardly likely to cause cancer; but if you have Type 16 and Type 18, you are at a significantly higher risk of getting cervical cancer. Unfortunately, the most common type of HPV is Type 16 with a prevalence of 32%, which is followed by Type 6 with a prevalence of 17%. The prevalence of Type 11 and Type 18 are 9% and 6% respectively.
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HPV infection is unfortunately a very common disease. A woman has a 75% chance of being infected with HPV in her lifetime.Read more