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High Risk HPV and Normal PAP

By March 16, 2010 - 6:25am
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Two years ago I got tested for HPV and tested negative, so I had the HPV Vaccine. The following year I tested positive for High Risk HPV with a normal PAP, 6 months later I had another exam and this time it was negative for HPV. 6 months later I had another test and it again tested positive for high risk HPV and the PAP was normal. I was given two options, either wait another 6 months and get tested again or have a Colposcopy now. What should I do?

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Thank you for your replies. Yes what I meant with the negative PAP was a normal PAP. My PAPS have always been normal. I spoke to my doctor and what she told me was that since I had the negative HPV result in between, that she consulted with acouple of other doctors and they agreed to recommend for me to wait 6 months and have another PAP and HPV test. If that one were to come back positive then I should havethe Colposcopy. But that it was up to me what I wanted to do. She said if it was her she would wait. What should I do?

March 17, 2010 - 5:32am
HERWriter Guide

Hi mafs - The only one who can make the decision on what to do next is you, but having good information to use to evaluate your options can help you do that.

First, let's look at the positive HPV results and what that means. Labs Tests Online is a nonprofit service provided by medical laboratory professionals to help consumers better understand lab tests. They say: A positive HPV DNA test indicates the presence of a high-risk type of HPV, but the test does not specify which type is present. If the HPV DNA test is negative, it is unlikely that there is a high-risk HPV infection. If the Pap smear is abnormal but the HPV DNA test is negative, then follow-up testing and further monitoring are indicated. Likewise, if the Pap smear is normal but the HPV DNA test is positive, additional testing may be necessary. The full explanation is here: http://www.labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/hpv/test.html
Doctors generally will order a colposcopy after a pap test returns abnormal results. This procedure closely examines the cervix and vagina for signs of disease. If your doctor finds an unusual area of cells during colposcopy, a sample of tissue can be collected for laboratory testing (biopsy). The advantage of having a colposcopy is that it can provide a lot of information. Colposcopy can be used to diagnose:
* Cervical cancer
* Genital warts
* Inflammation of the cervix (cervicitis)
* Precancerous changes in the cells of the cervix
* Precancerous changes in the cells of the vagina
* Vaginal cancer
There are a number of steps you can take to prepare for this procedure, and you'll also want to be aware of the risks involved. The Mayo Clinic provides helpful information at this link: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/colposcopy/MY00236/DSECTION=how-you-prepare

Various strains of HPV play a role in the development of most cases of cervical cancer, and the pap test and colposcopy are used to detect cervical cancer. With early detection, cervical cancer is usually easily treatable. Pre-cancerous changes in the cervix don't usually cause any symptoms, so these tests are the most accurate method of early detection. We have more information on our cervical cancer reference page: http://www.empowher.com/media/reference/cervical-cancer#definition

Is this the information that you need to make a decision? Do you have additional questions? Please let us know. We wish you the best results possible.
Take good care, Pat

March 16, 2010 - 5:31pm

Good question! Let us look into your options, and we will return with some information soon.

March 16, 2010 - 2:45pm
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