Facebook Pixel
EmpowHER Guest

Meaning of dormancy in HPV high risk strains

By Anonymous June 15, 2012 - 7:18am
Rate This

Hi.. I was tested positive for HPV (high risk types) last week. I am freaking out.. I have had 2 relationships so far.. and my current BF has not been with anyone before me, which means I got it from my first BF, which was more than 5 years back. I have never been tested for HPV before. What does this mean? HPV has been dormant in me for more than 5 years? What is the meaning of dormancy in HPV? If tested, would it have showed negative all these 5 years? Should'nt my immune system have cleared it up in 5 years? Also my PAP was normal.

Add a Comment3 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

Thanks for the info Rosa. Can you please answer these specific questions - If tested, would it have showed negative all these 5 years, while it was dormant? Shouldn't my immune system have cleared it up in 5 years?

June 15, 2012 - 8:24am
(reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon,

If it was dormant, then no test would pick it up. Your immune system did not "clear" it up because it was in a dormant state and didn't recognize that there was anything foreign that had to be cleared up.

All the best,


June 17, 2012 - 8:55am

Hi Anon,

Human papilloma virus, or HPV, is the name of a group of viruses comprising over 100 different strains discovered to date, 30–40 of which affect our reproductive tract. Transmitted through sexual contact, these strains can infect the genital area of men and women, including the penis, vulva (area outside the vagina), and anus, as well as the linings of the cervix, vagina, or the rectum.

Like the unrelated herpes simplex virus that causes cold sores, human papilloma virus is so widespread that the majority of men and women carry some form of HPV, but most don’t know it — a well-functioning immune system does a great job keeping the virus in check until something in their life triggers an eruption, often many years later. One estimate even suggests that by the age of 50 approximately 80% of women have acquired some strain of the HPV virus. So we could say that it’s just part of being human.

A dormant high risk HPV result, means that for many years, a certain high risk strain was in your body-- but it remained in a dormant state up until recently. For more information, please read: http://www.womentowomen.com/understandyourbody/tests/abnormalpapsmearsandhpv.aspx

I hope this helps!


June 15, 2012 - 8:10am
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

All user-generated information on this site is the opinion of its author only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. Members and guests are responsible for their own posts and the potential consequences of those posts detailed in our Terms of Service.

Human papillomavirus (HPV)

Get Email Updates

Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!