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Can HPV still remain latent in one's system after treatment for HPV-causing diseases?

By July 25, 2009 - 2:02pm
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I am totally confused about hpv and testing for it. Here is my situation. I have been faithful to my husband for over 30 years. It recently came to my attention that he has been leading a secret double life with another woman for ten years and I found out that she has been infected with HPV and has had surgical treatments. She revealed this to my husband and she had his informed consent. When I was aghast, he said she had frequent pap smears and had received a "clean bill of health." What does this mean. Is it possible that she still has HPV, that it was transmitted to me through my husband? I have had an HPV test in addition to my pap smear and the results were negative. But could I not still have a latent HPV infection that may arise in the future. Should I advise any future partners of this situation?

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Thank you for your post--I am so sorry you are having to go through this.

A "clean bill of health" means that she is ok, and although she was exposed to HPV and HPV-related diseases, she is now free of the disease. These diseases include: genital warts, cervical cancer, and other hpv-related cancers. It is likely that she was monitored for a while after testing positive and undergoing surgery through pap smears just to make sure that her body was not producing cancerous cells.

In men, there is actually no test to detect HPV or HPV-related cancers, but although HPV is very common, HPV-related cancers are actually very uncommon in men.

In most cases, the body fights off HPV naturally and the infected cells then go back to normal. This is most likely what happened in your case (If you even contracted HPV at all). However, it is always safe to re-test for HPV on your next gynecological visit.
Because it does tend to go away on its own, and your test came back negative, telling your future partner(s) is entirely up to you.

For more reading on Human Papillomavirus, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/STD/HPV/STDFact-HPV.htm

July 26, 2009 - 7:20am
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