Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is a sexually transmitted viral infection that affects the genitals, throat, or mouth. It is a common infection that can be contracted by sexually active individuals, even if they have only one sexual partner. In this blog, we will discuss the causes, symptoms, and prevention of HPV, as explained by Dr Govind Krishna Gupta, the best sexologist in Kolkata.
Causes Of HPV
HPV is transmitted through skin contact during vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected person. The virus can also be transmitted when the infected person shows no signs or symptoms. Some cases of HPV infection do not cause severe health issues, while others can lead to warts and even cancers of the throat, anus, and cervix.
Symptoms Of HPV
The initial HPV infection usually does not result in any discernible symptoms. However, warts can appear a few weeks, months, or years later.
Any of the following types of warts may occur:
- Genital warts can appear as small, stem-like bumps or lesions and may cause itching.
- Common warts: They are rough bumps that can occur on the hands, elbows, or fingers.
- Flat warts are flat, smooth lesions that may occur anywhere on your body.
- Plantar warts are hard, grainy bumps, usually occurring on the heels or balls of the feet.
Cancers caused by human papillomavirus typically do not show symptoms until the cancer spread is detected in the later stages.
Prevention Of HPV
The occurrence of HPV infection can be prevented by taking the vaccination. The quadrivalent vaccine is available in India, which can effectively protect against four different strains of HPV, including HPV-6 and -11, which are mostly responsible for genital warts, as well as HPV-16 and -18, which cause about 70 per cent of all cervical cancers. Getting vaccinated at an early age, ideally between 9 to 14 years, is essential to get maximum benefits.
In conclusion, HPV is a common sexually transmitted infection that can have serious health consequences. Therefore, it is essential to take preventive measures, such as getting vaccinated and practising safe sex, to reduce the risk of contracting HPV. If you have any concerns or questions about HPV, consult a qualified healthcare provider or a sexologist.
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