Can HPV Cause Cervical Cancer?

Human papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infection (STI). HPV is not just one virus, but a group of more than 200 closely related viruses.

There are two different types of sexually transmitted HPV. Low-risk HPV types cause genital warts on the penis or vagina. High-risk HPV types cause cancers in both men and women. HPV has been linked to cancers of the anus, throat, cervix, penis, vagina and vulva.

How is HPV infection spread?

HPV infection is transmitted through vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the virus. It is most commonly spread during vaginal or anal sex. It also spreads through close skin-to-skin touching during sex. A person with HPV can pass the infection to another person even when they have no signs or symptoms.

How does HPV cause cervical cancer?

In most cases, HPV infections go away on their own in 1 to 2 years. However, some people stay infected for many years.

If not treated, an HPV infection can cause cells inside the cervix to become cancerous. It can often take between 10 and 30 years from the time a person is infected until a tumor forms.

Can HPV be prevented?

There are a number of steps you can take to lower your risk of getting HPV.

  • Get vaccinated. The HPV vaccine is safe and effective. It can protect against diseases (including cancers) caused by HPV when given in the recommended age groups.
  • Get screened for cervical cancer. Routine screening for women aged 21 to 65 years old can prevent cervical cancer.
  • Practice safe sex if you are sexually active. Use condoms properly. Be in a mutually monogamous relationship.

Consult your doctor for more information on the link between HPV and cervical cancer.

Shop at Watsons for your vitamins, supplements, prescription medications, and other essential healthcare needs. HPV vaccine is also available. Check Watsons vaccination schedules now!


References: Accessed 23 September 2022 Accessed 23 September 2022

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