Human papilloma virus

Table of content


HPV infection is a type of viral infection that usually causes skin or mucous membrane growths and due to that warts are appearing. There are about 100 varieties of human papillomavirus (HPV). Some types of HPV infections cause warts and are mild, and some may be a reason to cause various types of cancers.

Most cases of HPV infections do not lead to cancer and are mild. But some types of genital HPV can cause cancer of the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina and it is called cervix (cervical cancer is very common in some involving HPV infections). Other types of cancers, including cancers of the anus, penis, vagina, vulva, and back of the throat (oropharyngeal), have been linked and related to HPV infection. These infections are mostly transmitted sexually or through other skin-to-skin contacts. Different types of vaccines may help protect against the strains of HPV more possibly causing genital warts or cervical cancers.

Symptoms of HPV infections

In most involved patients, the patient's body's immune system defeats an HPV infection before it creates warts. When warts do appear, they vary in their appearances because the kind of involved HPV is different:

Genital warts. These warts appear as flat lesions, small cauliflower-like bumps, or tiny stem-like protrusions. In women, genital warts appear mostly on the vulvas areas but can also occur in other locations like nearing the anus, on the cervix, or in the vagina. In men, genital warts appear on various areas like on the penis and scrotum or around the anus. Genital warts infrequently cause discomfort feelings or pain, though they may be itchy or patients feel tenderness.

Common warts. Common warts appear as rough, raised bumps and commonly supervene on the hands and fingers. In most cases, common warts are simply unsightly, but they can also be painful or susceptible to injury or bleeding.

Plantar warts. Plantar warts are hard, grainy growths that mostly come out on the heels or balls of patients' feet. These warts may cause discomfort.

Flat warts. Flat warts are flat-topped, slightly raised bruises. They can come out on any location, but children mostly get them on the face and men tend to get
them in the beard locations. Women tend to get them on their legs and feet.

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Cervical cancer and relationships with the Human papillomavirus:

About all cervical cancers are related to HPV infections, but cervical cancer will take near 20 years or longer to be presented following an HPV infection. The HPV infection and early cervical cancer ordinarily do not cause noticeable and clear symptoms. Getting vaccinated against HPV infection is the patient's best protection from cervical cancer.

Because early cervical cancer does not cause symptoms, women must have constant observing tests to detect any precancerous changes in the cervix that may lead to cancer. Prevalent guidelines have suggested that women at ages of 21 to 29 have a Pap test every three years.

Women at ages 30 to 65 are advised to continue having a Pap test every three years, or every five years if they also get the HPV DNA test at the same time. Women over 65 are able to stop testing if they have had three normal Pap tests in a row, or two HPV DNA and Pap tests with no abnormal results.

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When is it necessary to see a doctor?

If you or your child or your partner has warts of any kind that cause embarrassment, discomfort, or pain, seek advice from your doctor or healthcare provider.

Risk factors for getting involved with HPV:

HPV infections are getting very usual. Risk factors for HPV infection include:

A number of sexual partners. The more sexual partners a person has, the more likely patients are to contract a genital HPV infection. Having sex with a partner who has had multiple sex partners also increases your risk.

Age. However common warts occur mostly in children, Genital warts occur often in adolescents and young adults who are sexually active.

Weakened immune systems. People who do not have strong immune systems are at greater risk of HPV infections in comparison with others. Immune systems can be weakened by various results like HIV/AIDS or by immune system-suppressing drugs utilized following organ transplants.

Damaged skin. Areas of skin that have been punctured or opened are more susceptible to developing common warts.

Personal contact. Touching someone's warts or not wearing protection before contacting warts areas that have been exposed to HPV — such as public showers or swimming pools — might increase your risk of HPV infection.

Common complications of HPV

Oral and upper respiratory lesions. Some types of HPV infections cause lesions on the patient's tongue, tonsils, soft palate, or within the larynx and nose which are known as the upper respiratory system.

Cancer. Certain types of HPV can cause cervical cancer. These strains might also contribute to cancers of the genitals, anus, mouth, and upper respiratory tract.

Protection against Genital warts:

You can reduce your possibility of developing genital warts and other HPV-related genital lesions which can be cancerous by:

Being in a mutually monogamous sexual relationship

Reducing the number of sex partners

Using a latex condom, which can reduce the chance of getting involved with HPV transmission

HPV vaccination

Gardasil 9 is an HPV vaccine accepted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and can be used for both sex, males and females to make protection against cervical cancer and genital warts. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends routine HPV vaccination for girls and boys at ages of 11 and 12, however, it can be injected as soon as age 9. It is perfect for girls and boys to be vaccinated before their start of having sexual contact and their exposure to HPV. Different trusted researches have proven that receiving the vaccine at a young age is not linked to an earlier start of sexual activity. It is important to know that once a person is infected with HPV, the vaccine may not be as effective or might not work at all. Also, response to the vaccine is better at younger ages than older ones. But, if given before someone is infected, the vaccine can prevent most cases of cancerous types which are effective in cervical cancers. The CDC suggests that all 11- and 12-year-olds receive two doses of HPV vaccine at least six months apart. Younger adolescents ages 9 and 10 and teenagers at the ages of 13 and 14 are able to be vaccinated on the updated two-dose schedule. Research has proved that the two-dose schedule is effective for children under 15. Teenagers and younger adults who begin the vaccine series later than the ages which were mentioned before, at ages 15 through 26, should continue to receive three doses of the vaccine. The CDC recommends catch-up HPV vaccinations for all people through age 26 who are not adequately vaccinated.

You can get any information about different aspects of the human papillomavirus on Ermateb's website. Try to read the articles for managing your vaccination schedule, protection, or even treatment choices following facing it. If you have any questions or comments contact Ermateb's professional experts who try to answer you as soon as possible.

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