The answer is yes, it can. But only if you are exposed to HPV while having unprotected sexual activity with someone who has the virus. If not then there’s no risk at all.
How do I know if I’m infected with HPV?
You might think that because you had one or two partners in your life, you’re immune from getting infected with HPV. However, this isn’t true. Even though you may have had one or two partners, you still could have been exposed to HPV.
What happens when I get infected with HPV?
When you contract HPV, it causes warts on your skin and genital area. These warts will grow into cancerous growths called cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). CIN is the most common type of cancer caused by HPV.
Can I get HPV even if I’ve never had any types of sexual contact?
Yes, but only if you are exposed to HPV during vaginal, penile, or rectal penetration. There is no way to transmit HPV through kissing or other forms of non-penetrative sexual contact. So don’t worry about kissing your boyfriend on the mouth! You can read more about how to prevent STDs here .
What are the most common symptoms of HPV?
Some people show no symptoms at all. Most people will experience one or more of the following:
Warts around the genital area. These warts are known as genital warts and may appear around the genitals, in and around the vaginal area, or in and around the rectal area.
Abnormal pap smear. The presence of genital warts makes it more likely that you will experience an abnormal pap smear during your routine check-ups.
Genital bleeding. This symptom is also more likely to occur in women who have genital warts.
Can HPV be cured?
There is no cure for HPV. If you want to get rid of your warts, your doctor will prescribe a special medication for you. This medication is only designed to get rid of the external warts, and not the ones inside your body. There are special medications for that as well. Be sure to tell your doctor if you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, so they can run tests on you and prescribe medication immediately.
Does HPV cause cervical cancer?
When left untreated, yes, HPV can cause cervical cancer in women. It is one of the leading causes of this type of cancer. This is why it is so important to get routine check-ups with your doctor and get tested regularly for HPV. If the infection is found early enough, it can easily be treated before it becomes a bigger problem. Be sure to book an appointment with your doctor immediately if you experience any of the symptoms above.
If I have HPV, will it affect my fertility?
Unfortunately, yes. Having HPV puts you at risk for fertility problems in the future.
Sources & references used in this article:
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Human papillomavirus infection and fertility alteration: a systematic review by T Souho, M Benlemlih, B Bennani – PLoS One, 2015 – journals.plos.org
The effect of human papillomavirus infection on sperm cell motility by YM Lai, JF Lee, HY Huang, YK Soong, FP Yang… – Fertility and …, 1997 – Elsevier
Human papillomavirus in semen and the risk for male infertility: a systematic review and meta-analysis by Z Lyu, X Feng, N Li, W Zhao, L Wei, Y Chen… – BMC infectious …, 2017 – Springer
Correlation between HPV sperm infection and male infertility by Y Yang, CW Jia, YM Ma, LY Zhou… – Asian journal of …, 2013 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
Detection of adeno-associated virus in human semen: does viral infection play a role in the pathogenesis of male infertility? by V Rohde, K Erles, HP Sattler, H Derouet, B Wullich… – Fertility and sterility, 1999 – Elsevier
The risk of human papillomavirus infection for male fertility abnormality: a meta-analysis by YQ Xiong, YX Chen, MJ Cheng, WQ He… – Asian journal of …, 2018 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
Male partners of infertile couples with seminal infections of human papillomavirus have impaired fertility parameters by E Damke, FA Kurscheidt, VA Balani… – BioMed Research …, 2017 – hindawi.com