The HPV virus is transmitted sexually and both women and men are affected. It is responsible for mouth, anus, penis, and cervical cancer. The virus is a group of viruses actually and affect the human skin. There are more than 100 types of it and some of them cause common warts on the feet and hands. Most of the HPV types are harmless and do not cause any symptoms, thus they go away on their own.
Around 40 types of HPV are known as genital HPV because they affect the genital area and the experts warn that 80% of people will get infected of the virus at some point in their lives. There may be high-risk types which cause cervical pre-cancer and cancer, as well as low risk types that contribute to genital warts and usually benign changes in the cervix. This kind of virus spreads on the skin directly to skin contact and anyone who has any type of sexual activity that involves genital contact can get the virus, meaning that it is probable to get it even without having the virus. A lot of people who have it might not show symptoms, thus can transmit the virus without knowing it. One person can get infected with the virus with more than one kind of the virus. According to medical experts, a lot of people get their first type of HPV infection within their first few years of becoming sexually active.
The latest statistics show that the infected women have high chances of developing cervical cancer in the next 10-20 years, thus all of them are advised to perform their routine gynecologist exams, even those who are no longer active sexually. The infections in women who are older than 30 are less likely to be cured naturally.
Male condoms help in reducing the risk of contact, while female condoms cover more than the male ones, but they only reduce the infection. They cannot eliminate the risk of infection completely. According to the latest statistics, around 30% of the oral cancers are related to HPV.
The bottom line:
- 80% of sexually active women will get infected at some point in their lives;
- Condoms cannot give 100% protection;
- The symptoms in some cases do not appear for years and in some cases when they have not experienced any symptoms during their life;
- The virus can spread through skin contact with the infected area covered by the condom;
- This is a common, prolific, and contagious infection that is transmitted through sex;
- The virus can show up even though there are no symptoms;
- The virus is mainly transmitted through sexual contact and a lot of people get it shortly after the intercourse;
- Women are more susceptible to the virus than men
- The most common HPV-related disease is cervical cancer, and it is one of the leading causes for death in women.