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Hpv (human Papillomavirus)
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
is the most common infection spread by sexual contact. It can also be spread from a mother to her baby during delivery. HPV may cause oral and genital warts or tumors in your nose, mouth, throat, and lungs. HPV may also cause vaginal, penile, and anal cancers. You may not show symptoms of any of these conditions for several years after being exposed to HPV.
Common symptoms include the following:
- Painless warts
- Genital or anal discharge, bleeding, itching, or pain
- Pain when you urinate
Contact your healthcare provider if:
- You have warts in your genital or anal area.
- You have genital or anal discharge, bleeding, itching, or pain.
- You have pain when you urinate.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
Treatment for HPV
includes relieving symptoms. There is no cure for HPV. There is treatment for the conditions that are caused by HPV. You will need to be closely monitored for these conditions. Ask your healthcare provider for more information about monitoring, conditions caused by HPV, and treatments.
Prevent HPV infection:
Vaccinations can help stop the spread of HPV. The vaccine is most effective if given before sexual activity begins. This allows your body to build almost complete protection against HPV before having contact with the virus. The HPV vaccine is still effective up to the age of 26 if it is given after sexual activity has already begun.
Who should get the HPV vaccine:
The first dose of the vaccine may be given as early as 9 years of age. The following should also get the vaccine:
- All females and males 11 to 12 years of age
- Females 13 through 26 years of age, and males 13 through 21 years of age, who have not been vaccinated
- Men up to 26 years of age who have sex with other men, and have not been vaccinated
- Anyone with a weak immune system, including infection with HIV, up to 26 years of age
Who should not get the vaccine or should wait to get it:
Do not get a second dose if you had a severe allergic reaction to the first dose. Do not get the vaccine if you are pregnant. If you are sick, wait to get the vaccine until symptoms go away.
How the vaccine is given:
The HPV vaccine can be given with other vaccinations. The vaccine is given in 3 doses to adults:
- The first dose is given at any time.
- The second dose is given 1 to 2 months after the first dose.
- The third dose is given 6 months after the first dose.
More information about how the vaccine is given:
You may need 1 more dose of the HPV vaccine if any of the following is true:
- You only received 1 dose of the HPV vaccine before 15 years of age
- You received 2 doses of the HPV vaccine less than 5 months apart before 15 years of age
Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.