HPV   

Effect on my life   

   

How Will HPV Affect My Life?

HPV, like other sexually transmitted infections, can cause feelings of shame, anger, and embarrassment.  If infected, it is important for you to discuss HPV and other STIs with any potential sexual partner, particularly since currently, at least half of all sexually active teenagers are infected with HPV. 

Most of the time, an HPV infection will have little to no affect on your life and resolves or goes away on its own, but, it can be serious, since high-risk strains can cause cervical cancer.  Almost all cervical cancer is caused by HPV. Approximately 11,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year in the United States and 3500 die annually as a result of this tumor. Another 500,000 women are diagnosed with "precancerous" or dysplastic lesions and at least half of these are felt to be due to HPV. Because dysplasia caused by certain strains of HPV can go on to cancer, women diagnosed with it require intermittent monitoring and possibly treatment. 

Women infected with HPV who do not go for regular Pap smears may develop cervical cancer which can require invasive surgery (sometimes with removal of the uterus and other organs) as well as other intensive cancer treatments. A Pap smear is a very important part of a women's annual health screening if she is sexually active.