There is good news and bad news about human papillomavirus (HPV). The bad news is that it’s the most common STD. But the good news is that it usually goes away on its own and doesn’t do your body any harm. That said, some types of HPV are dangerous, so Hayat Jawadi, DO, FACOG, regularly tests her patients at Premier Ob/Gyn and Med Spa for this infection. If you want to learn more or want to set up your own test, call Premier Ob/Gyn and Med Spa in Henderson, Nevada.
HPV is actually a group of more than 200 viruses. They all impact the body in different ways. Some do basically nothing at all and go away on their own within a couple of years, while others cause genital warts or cancer.
That’s part of what makes HPV so tricky. While some infections come with symptoms, others are silent as they cause cell changes that become cancerous. Specifically, high-risk HPV infections can lead to:
The good news is that routine HPV testing identifies this infection early when it’s still beginning to make changes to your cells and before it has the opportunity to develop into any type of cancer.
If you’ve ever had a Pap smear, you’ve already been checked for HPV. A Pap smear takes a sample of cells from your cervix. If any of the cells are abnormal, it’s a good indicator that you have HPV. Catching those abnormal cells early makes treating them much more effective, so Dr. Jawadi offers all of her patients routine Pap smears.
While a Pap smear can indicate that you have HPV based on the cells in your cervix, it’s not technically an HPV test. Dr. Jawadi also offers HPV testing upon request to keep you informed of your status and help you protect your health.
Absolutely. While there’s no cure for this virus, an HPV diagnosis isn’t a cause for panic. As we’ve said, most HPV infections go away on their own over time. If you have the type of HPV that develops into genital warts, Dr. Jawadi can remove them.
And if you have high-risk HPV, there are effective treatment options that stop it before it develops into cancer. Catching the infection early, before it’s had the opportunity to alter many of your cells, makes this treatment more effective. That’s why Dr. Jawadi offers Pap smears and HPV testing as preventive care for all of her patients.
To learn more about HPV or to schedule a Pap smear or HPV test, call Premier Ob/Gyn and Med Spa.