In the recent several years, public health initiatives have been underway to increase public awareness of the prevalence of the HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) among the sexually active population, it’s health consequences of genital warts and cervical cancer, and the recommendations for Gardasil, one the available vaccines effective in the prevention of HPV. How much do you know/understand about HPV?
Test your knowledge of HPV here, with this simple quiz:
1. Of sexually transmitted infections, the most common is:
– HPV (the Human Papilloma Virus)
– HSV (the Herpes Simplex Virus)
– HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)
2. The HPV virus is spread by:
Genital contact, most commonly through sex
Straight and same-sex partners
All of the above
3. The HPV is the cause of most cases of both genital warts, and cervical cancer?
4. The majority of cases of HPV infection cause no (visible) signs of infection at all, and are cleared by our body’s own immune system?
5. The HPV is a ‘newly’ discovered virus, linked with genital warts and cervical cancer?
6. The HPV vaccines are more than 90% effective in preventing genital warts and cervical cancer in femalefemafemifemales vaccinated before their sexual debut?
As a practicing Ob/Gyn providing healthcare for female patients, I often get this question from mothers regarding their tween/teenage daughters. Though the guidelines for requiring the first Pap smear have changed, to start at age 21, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends the first 'reproductive health visit' at ages 13-15. This initial visit may not require a pelvic exam, unless your daughter is having menstrual difficulties (pelvic pain, menstrual cramping, abnormal/heavy periods) or is sexually active. Contraceptive options, STD prevention, and the HPV vaccine may be discussed at this visit.