Human Papillomavirus Research Essay

Submitted By xmojo94
Words: 760
Pages: 4

HPV Human papillomavirus (HPV) is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases that are spreading. More than fifty percent of sexually active people are infected with HPV. HPV isn’t just one disease; there are many different types of it. According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), “there are more than 150 viruses related to HPV. More than forty of these viruses can be easily spread through skin-to-skin contact during vaginal, anal and oral sex” (NCI 2012). Years can pass until symptoms start to show up; therefore, people can unknowingly pass it to another person. Although HPV is the most common STD, “It still has a chance going away by itself even before symptoms begin to appear” (Medline Plus 2013). That still shouldn’t stop someone from worrying about HPV. There are many serious symptoms to HPV, some more high-risk than others. One of the low-risk symptoms is genital warts. Genital warts are small bumps that appear in the genital area. Some very high-risk symptoms are “Recurrent respiratory papillomatosis (RRP), Cervical cancer, and other, less common, but serious cancers, including genital cancers (cancer of the vulva, vagina, penis, or anus), and a type of head and neck cancer called oropharyngeal cancer (cancer in the back of throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils)” (CDC 2013). RRP is a rare condition in which warts grow in the throat. Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that occurs on a woman’s cervix. Even though these are all potentially deadly symptoms, there are plenty of ways to prevent it and treat it. A major way to prevent HPV is to get a HPV vaccine when a person is eleven or twelve years old. HPV vaccines are safe and effective, and can protect males and females against some of the most common types of HPV that can lead to disease and cancer. “HPV vaccines are given in three shots over six months; it is important to get all three doses to get the best protection. Boys and girls at ages 11 or 12 are most likely to have the best protection provided by HPV vaccines, and their immune response to vaccine is better than older women and men” (CDC 2013). Although the HPV vaccine is used for both boys and girls, there is a difference in the two. The girls get two vaccines: Cervarix and Gardasil. These two vaccines are in use to protect females against the types of HPV that cause most cervical cancers. One of these vaccines, Gardasil, also protects against most genital warts. It could also help to protect against anal, vaginal, and vulvar cancers. For boys there is only one vaccine, Gardasil. It is in use to protect males against most genital warts and anal cancers. Another way to lower the risk of catching HPV is to use condoms. These may lower the risk of HPV between sexually active people. Condoms may