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I just got an HPV test together with my Pap test. If I get my results back and I do have HPV, what then? What should I expect in terms of follow-up or treatment?

By August 31, 2010 - 11:39am
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Hi EmpowHERFan,
Thanks for your question, and for being a part of the EmpowHER Community.
HPV and the Pap are two different tests. The Pap test looks for abnormal cells on your cervix. The HPV test just looks for HPV. If you test positive for HPV, and the Pap test is normal, then the doctor will test you again in a number of months to see if the virus has gone away. If the virus hasn't gone away, they may do other tests. If you have HPV and the doctor finds abnormal cells on your cervix, the cells can be removed using one of several procedures, depending on your personal situation.
There currently is no treatment for HPV, and it normally should go away on its own (it's unclear if it goes away completely or if it just goes undetectable). HPV is the most common STD. According to the American Cancer Society, 8 out of 10 women will get STD in their lifetime. Not all cases of HPV would eventually turn into cancer.
Here is the information I found in case you want to read it all yourself: http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/CancerCauses/OtherCarcinogens/InfectiousAgents/HPV/thinking-about-testing-for-hpv
Good luck and let us know when you get your results. We also would like to help if you have any additional questions.

August 31, 2010 - 12:27pm
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