Human Papillomavirus Facts

Human Papillomavirus Facts
Human Papillomavirus is a virus that causes human papillomavirus infection in humans, which can result in precancerous lesions. HPV risk is spread through skin-to-skin contact during unprotected sex, or during pregnancy from an infected mother to baby. There are over 150 types of HPVs, but the most dangerous are the 13 known to cause cancer. The most common HPVs can be prevented with vaccines when given between the ages of 9 and 13. HPV types 16 and 18 are responsible for an estimated 70% cases of cervical cancer or cervical lesions that are precancerous. HPV is considered to be the most commonly spread virus of the reproductive system.
Interesting Human Papillomavirus Facts:
Human papillomaviruses are extremely common around the world.
Most human papillomaviruses are spread through sexual activity. Infection usually occurs shortly after an individual begins sexual activity.
Although human papillomaviruses are most often associated with cervical cancer, they may also be linked to increased rates of cancers of other reproductive organs and the anus.
In less developed or industrialized regions of the world the rates of cervical cancers are much higher. It is estimated that 85% of the deaths that occur from cervical cancer around the world occur in these regions.
Infection with human papillomaviruses is also known to cause cancer at the back of the throat, in the tonsils and the base of the tongue.
It is estimated that most people will be infected with at least one type of HPV in the lives.
The majority of those who contract HPV do not know that they have acquired a virus. Most people do not get sick or develop symptoms.
It is estimated that approximately 30,700 cancers in the United States each year are caused by HPV.
There have not been any documented cases of HPV transmission through contact with a toilet seat.
Most people that acquire an HPV will spontaneously heal within a few months and an estimated 90% will heal within two years.
Once an HPV has caused cervical cancer a woman may experience irregular menstrual cycles, pain in the leg, back or pelvic area, loss of appetite, weight loss, fatigue, a swollen leg or other symptoms.
Risk factors for acquiring HPV and subsequent cervical cancer include having early sexual activity, multiple partners, smoking, and diseases such as HIV which suppress the immune system.
The vaccines for HPV 16 and 18 have been shown to be highly effective in preventing cervical cancer.
The vaccine for HPV 6 and 11 has shown to be effective for preventing anogenital warts.
Vaccines to prevent cervical or other cancers caused by HPV must be administered prior to a person's first sexual encounter to be most effective.
Vaccinations, screening, prevention, and education are the most effective ways to help reduce the spread of HPV.
Most people do not know they have an HPV and these viruses can be spread when there are no symptoms at all.
Since 2006 in the United States there has been a 64% reduction in HPV infections in teen girls of the vaccine-preventable infection types.

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