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hellosunshine
03-04-2007, 12:43 PM
another rant!!!


in the newspaper today there is an article about vaccines for this "sex disease"insinuating it happens to promiscious women.


i had to be cut and burt out for this after a dodgey smear.VERY unpleasant experience-i was off the bike for a day!!!!!!BUT this just adds shame to the whole experience.

i lost my virginity when i was 21,i have never slept about ,im just unlucky,makes me seeeeeeeeeeeeeethe.


actually does the bike contribute to cervical cancer?not that itd stop me riding.

Wahine
03-04-2007, 01:04 PM
Sunshine - Riding the bike does not contribute to cervical cancer. HPV, the Human Papilloma Virus, does. This is the virus that is responsible for Herpes - all the different kinds, from what I understand. As genital herpes is sexually transmitted, you are more likely to get HPV if you have multiple sex partners. Having said that, it only takes one exposure and the estimates in North America are that 1 in every 4 people is carrying HPV. So.... Do the math and it doesn't take long to see that it's not uncommon and risk of exposure is high even in people who have one partner.

You are more likely to have cervical cancer if you have HPV.

HPV is a virus that stays in the body and looks for opportune moments to rear it's ugly head. If your immune system is suppressed, you are more likely to have an outbreak. I'm not sure if mechanical irritation contributes to outbreaks or not.

I hope this helps. I understand how irritating it is when these diseases are labeled in a way that makes the sufferer look like they deserve it. It's completely insensitive and ignorant.

SouthernBelle
03-04-2007, 01:25 PM
Chose to Know (http://www.thehpvtest.com/community-HPV-choose-to-know.html)

OR

Make the Commitment (http://www.makethecommitment.org/what_you_can_do/make_the_commitment.asp)

KnottedYet
03-04-2007, 02:36 PM
If there were a simple vaccine that would protect men from a sexually transmitted cancer, you can bet your boots it would be an inalienable right to get that vaccine!

I met a woman who I later learned had died of cervical cancer. She was only 26.

btchance
03-04-2007, 03:20 PM
Wahine - actually HPV causes cervical cancer (and vulvar, vaginal, and anal cancers) and warts (genital and otherwise); another virus, the herpes simplex virus (HSV), causes genital herpes; either way, they are transmitted in the same manner.

Hellosunshine - I'm sorry you had to go through all that. But at least you are getting it taken care of early. As for the promiscious thing - it makes people more likely to contract HPV, but like all STDs - one partner who happens to have it can be the cause. The difference between HPV and the others is that it is extremely, extremely prevalent - somewhere around 80% of all college age women who are sexually active will contract HPV at some time - they just may never know it. I hate the way the media makes all women who contract some type of infection appear to be sleeping aroung - it just isn't the case.

Knottedyet - this vaccine should actually be studied in men. HPV can cause cancer in men just in the same way it causes cancer in women, just not as frequently. And I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. Hopefully those deaths will be less frequent in the future.

Okay, I'll be quiet now. But if you have any questions you would like me to attempt to answer, I can try. (I've done some research in this field)

KnottedYet
03-04-2007, 03:51 PM
A question for BTChance: Should all of us chickies get tested for HPV?

Wahine
03-04-2007, 05:37 PM
Wahine - actually HPV causes cervical cancer (and vulvar, vaginal, and anal cancers) and warts (genital and otherwise); another virus, the herpes simplex virus (HSV), causes genital herpes; either way, they are transmitted in the same manner.

Hellosunshine - I'm sorry you had to go through all that. But at least you are getting it taken care of early. As for the promiscious thing - it makes people more likely to contract HPV, but like all STDs - one partner who happens to have it can be the cause. The difference between HPV and the others is that it is extremely, extremely prevalent - somewhere around 80% of all college age women who are sexually active will contract HPV at some time - they just may never know it. I hate the way the media makes all women who contract some type of infection appear to be sleeping aroung - it just isn't the case.

Knottedyet - this vaccine should actually be studied in men. HPV can cause cancer in men just in the same way it causes cancer in women, just not as frequently. And I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. Hopefully those deaths will be less frequent in the future.

Okay, I'll be quiet now. But if you have any questions you would like me to attempt to answer, I can try. (I've done some research in this field)

Wow, BTChance. I have been misled and I thought I was fairly informed on the topic. My mother was diagnosed with cervical cancer and the post I wrote was based on information I had gathered at that time. So does having HSV increase the probability of having HPV? Are they linked in some way?

And +1 what Knott said.

Thank you so much for your information.

Running Mommy
03-04-2007, 06:23 PM
I had cervical cancer. Actually I've been on a treatment regime twice now because I had an iffy read on a subsequent test.
Never did my doctor mention HPV. I'm glad there is now a vaccine for it, but I don't like how it's being portrayed in such an ugly light.
My husband heard the commercial for the vaccine and asked me if I had an STD. I was MORTIFIED!!! You see he was a virgin when we met, I was not. So somehow I feel like he thinks that I have something horrible that I could possibly pass on to him. It's a very touchy subject between us to say the least.
I still don't know if I have HPV??
My latest battle is with a rogue ovary. My doctor is not liking the looks of one of them so I have to go in for a sonogram. I'm kind of putting it off, tho I know I need to do it. I guess I should ask the OB about the HPV thing when I see her, but I also think that part of me doesn't want to know. I guess my main question is can you have cervical cancer and NOT have HPV??
Anyone know that answer??

mimitabby
03-04-2007, 06:27 PM
wow, Running mom, you are a cancer survivor. That is a nasty one, and I know someone that died YOUNG from it too.

Take care of yourself, it sounds like you are living life to the fullest, as we all should.

trickytiger
03-04-2007, 07:28 PM
RunningMommy,

I could be wrong, but two types of HPV are responsible for approximately 70% of cervical cancers (the viruses are labeled 14 and 16, I think). So, no, you do not have to have HPV to get cervical cancer, but it's most likely involved. Plus, the types of HPV that are linked to cancer are the ones that present no physical symptoms (like warts), so most women would have no idea that they were infected unless they were tested after a bad pap result.

hellosunshine
03-05-2007, 03:08 AM
no this all happened feb 16th 2006!

yes,we are lucky in the UK the nat health system is 100% at times........



what also strikes me in how 100% lucky we are that we talk quite openly here,things id never discuss normally,there again as i mix in a male dominated sport i think ive only 2 female friends,so ta v muchy.xx to you all

btchance
03-05-2007, 03:24 AM
Thanks trickytiger for helping to answer that question. I don't have time to type out some answers this morning but I will get to them this evening.

And RunningMommy - get your butt to the doctor to get that sonogram!!! Ovaries are not something to mess with. (you're not going to make me beg for you to go, are you ?)

Crankin
03-05-2007, 04:21 AM
My best friend from childhood died from cervical cancer at age 21. Although I had moved away, I believe that she was diagnosed at age 15, and had a hysterectomy shortly after that (it had spread). I wouldn't care what people are insinuating about the link between sex and HPV/cancer. If I had a daughter, I would insist she get the vaccine.
It's amazing I have lived this long...

bmccasland
03-05-2007, 05:28 AM
OK, I'll ask a dumb (?) question .. I've been getting Pap smears for years, doesn't this test for HPV? Have my annual physical in a couple of months and inquiring minds want to know.

(and yeah, I know, "there's no such thing as a dumb question".)

SalsaMTB
03-05-2007, 06:05 AM
OK, I'll ask a dumb (?) question .. I've been getting Pap smears for years, doesn't this test for HPV? Have my annual physical in a couple of months and inquiring minds want to know.

(and yeah, I know, "there's no such thing as a dumb question".)

+1. I'm curious to know this also. I know very little about cervical cancer and HPV.

Also, for people in US, how does getting tested for HPV impact insurance coverage? Just curious, if you test positive, but don't have cancer and do nothing, then later get diagnosed with cancer, will insurance still cover treatment??

The reason I ask this is something I recall my mother telling me. I do not know if this is still true, so if someone knows it isn't, please correct me. A friend of the family has been fighting breast cancer. She carries one of the genes that makes you significantly more likely to get the cancer. She wanted her daughter to get tested for the gene, but her daughter was reluctant because if she were found positive for the gene, she would need to take preventative measures for breast cancer (ie preventative mastectomy), otherwise insurance would not cover treatment later on in life if she were to get breast cancer.

Grog
03-05-2007, 08:55 AM
I hope BTChance will provide more enlightening details, but as someone who's been treated for weird stuff on my cervix I can give little info I have.

The pap smear does not test for HPV, it looks for abnormal cells on your cervix. If abnormal cells are found, a test for HPV will be made. However I don't think it matters that much whether the source of the abnormal cells is HPV or something else, it has to be treated anyway, and there is no way to take HPV outside of your body once it's there.

There is a new test around supposedly that is much better than the pap smear but I haven't experienced it personally and am not sure whether it's been approved for mass use.

Pap smears are not totally and do not catch everything. Which is why it is very important to get one every year so that you increase your chance of catching any problem early. Abnormal cells on your cervix, if let to their own nasty thing, might lead to cervical cancer and other cancers in that area. Sometimes they just disappear, too.

Where I'm from, "promiscuity" is not so much of an issue and few people freak out when teenagers have sex. I've always been told that early start of sexual activity is a risk factor. It makes sense: the longer you've had sex, the more chance you have of being exposed to the virus. I don't see it as a moral issue. I encourage you to do the same with your partners, friends, daughters. As others have mentioned, most women who are sexually active have been exposed to HPV. Not all will develop cancer as a result. But it's a virus that's basically omnipresent. Like, by the way, HSV (herpes) that is thought to be present in about 1/6 people if not more. Making it a shameful thing just prevents people from seeking treatment.

**

RM: GO GET THAT ULTRASOUND. NOW. You don't want to wait until the funny looking ovaries start behaving funny. If only for that reason: it HURTS terribly. (Think of a man being repeatedly kicked in the balls.......) And the earlier you get them to straighten their act - or are reassured about it - the better.

chickwhorips
03-05-2007, 09:00 AM
my pap keeps coming back abnormal. i don't know why. a couple years ago they took a chunk of my cervix and tested it, but nothing was wrong.

why do i keep having abnormal paps? bc it keeps coming up, i don't really want to keep going back every couple of months to be checked. specially when nothing comes from it. i'm so frustrated.

i've considered getting vaccinated, but don't know much more about it. i hear its good to get until your 26, which i just turned. still debating about it. they probably don't have it out here in the bush, but in town they probably do. i just haven't heard much about it or if my insurance will cover it.

DrBadger
03-05-2007, 10:32 AM
For those of you curious about the vaccine for HPV (it is called Guardasil and is made my Merk) it is a series of 3 shots given over 6 months. It is currently FDA "approved" for girls 12-26 in the US. However, this is just a guideline, and many doctors will give it to women older depending on circumstances. Generally they are giving it to women who have not become sexually active yet, as this is the only way to know that they haven't been exposed to one of the 4 strains of HPV that it is effective for. However, I believe that some doctors are giving it to people who have already been sexually active because the chances that they have already been exposed to all 4 strains is pretty low. As for insurance covering it, some are, some aren't, and it might depend on your age.

I have had two of my 3 doses, and I didn't start it until I was 27 (am 28 now), but I had talked to my Dr. the minute it was approved by the FDA since my mom had cervical cancer, and I have not yet been sexually active. While cervical cancer is usually caused by one of the HPV strains, it is still unclear why it only forms into cancer in some women, and there is a thought that that part of it might be genetic. My insurance doesn't cover it (yet), but I can get the vaccine at cost at my university. It is $135 for each injection, so ~$400 for all 3. In my mind, that is a small price to pay for decreasing my risk of cervical cancer.

I would encourage anyone who is able to to get the vaccine, and if you (or your daughters) are in the age group, or close to it, and there is a history of cervical cancer in your family I would really push the Dr. to let you get it ASAP, even if you have to pay for it.

RunningMommy - I know what you mean about this being a touchy subject for partners... my mom only had 1 partner, my dad, and the Dr.s do know that HPV caused her cervical cancer, so my dad hates that there are now all these ads about cancer being caused by a sexually transmitted virus, because it implies that he gave it to her. To add to it, she had to have a full hysterectomy, so no more kids.

For those of you older or yunger, I know that Merk is running clinical trials on women over 26 and on men (so they can't transmit it), so keep watching.

Also, word of warning... the injection hurts like a b**ch! Apparently it is the silver solution they use as the carrier. My clinic has found that the slower they inject it the less painful it is, so suggest that when you get it if they don't say anything.

Kitsune06
03-05-2007, 12:25 PM
People know entirely too little about entirely too much.

I'm with you, Knot- I'd like to add that I betya anything that said vaccine for men wouldn't cost $600 for a 3-shot round. We had a client come in and b*tch to my manager (just casual b*tching, my mgr used to be a nurse) that she has three daughters, all under 12, which is the age at which some states are actually *requiring* the immunization. $1800 for protection for her daughters? I Sh*t you not.

Regarding testing- I'd reccommend being tested during annual exams...

Oh, to have health insurance. And even then I don't know if it'd be covered. :p

I think part of why there isn't as much of a clamor for it is that people think of only promiscuous people picking this up. As stated before, 1 in 4 has a strain of some sort. Sh!t happens that's beyond our control. end of story. Protection is incredibly important.

Think of the sheer amount of healthcare costs that will be reduced when we manage to reduce the number of women who develop cervical cancer because of HPV? What a benefit that would be to society. How dare they charge so much? I know Merck has a policy for those under-funded, but it would likely prove very difficult, indeed, to manage that.

PABadger- Ok, I know it might be awhile before I can afford this, but seriously, yer makin' me nervous. Like I need to be *more* afraid of a vaccination! ;)

DrBadger
03-05-2007, 12:34 PM
PABadger- Ok, I know it might be awhile before I can afford this, but seriously, yer makin' me nervous. Like I need to be *more* afraid of a vaccination! ;)


At least it only hurts while they give the injection, and not for days afterwards like the tetanus vacccine :rolleyes: I got my first HPV, a tetanus AND my flu shot all on the same day :eek: talk about sore arms!

matagi
03-05-2007, 12:36 PM
As already mentioned the routine Pap smear looks for abnormal cells. It does not look for the presence of HPV. If you are concerned about HPV then you need to ask for additional testing to look for wart virus DNA.

btchance
03-05-2007, 02:47 PM
A question for BTChance: Should all of us chickies get tested for HPV?

Grog did a good job of answering alot of the questions that came up, so thanks! I'll just reiterate a few things (and hopefully not confuse everybody).

The annual exam with a Pap smear determines whether or not you need to be tested for HPV or go directly to treatment for abnormal cells, and then does the test if needed, with the results of the Pap and HPV together guiding any treatment needed.

Basically - you can't treat the actual virus, you can only treat the problems the virus causes, like cancer and atypical cells leading up to cancer.

This is a little more info on Pap smears - you may be interested in this, or it may confuse you any more. It basically tells you when HPV testing is done, and when it's not, and the reasons for it.
- If the Pap is normal, no HPV testing is done - even if the virus is there, it doesn't matter b/c you can't get rid of the virus; you only treat if it causes a problem.
- ASCUS - atypical cells and they don't know what they mean - in this situation they do the test for HPV and the result determines the treatment; if positive, you get another exam looking for areas that need to be biopsied; if negative, you get another Pap smear at follow-up
- any other results (low grade, high grade abnormal cells) - almost all of these Pap smears are going to be HPV positive - they just go ahead and treat the cells and don't bother looking for the virus; whether or not it's there doesn't matter; you're treating the cells, not the virus.

btchance
03-05-2007, 02:51 PM
Wow, BTChance. I have been misled and I thought I was fairly informed on the topic. My mother was diagnosed with cervical cancer and the post I wrote was based on information I had gathered at that time. So does having HSV increase the probability of having HPV? Are they linked in some way?

And +1 what Knott said.

Thank you so much for your information.


Wahine - herpes virus and HPV are confused pretty often unless you deal with both of them frequently. The difference between the two of them is that:
HSV - causes ulcers, no cancer
HPV - causes warts (growth-looking lesions) and cancer.
Having HSV indirectly increases risk of HPV just because they are transmitted the same way. It doesn't increase the risk in any other way that I know of.

btchance
03-05-2007, 03:00 PM
RunningMommy,

I could be wrong, but two types of HPV are responsible for approximately 70% of cervical cancers (the viruses are labeled 14 and 16, I think). So, no, you do not have to have HPV to get cervical cancer, but it's most likely involved. Plus, the types of HPV that are linked to cancer are the ones that present no physical symptoms (like warts), so most women would have no idea that they were infected unless they were tested after a bad pap result.

You're right, you don't have to have HPV to have cervical cancer. It's just that the majority of cervical ca is caused by HPV.

There are different types of HPV that cause different problems (think of them like dogs - different breeds, each with different characteristics but the same basic make-up)

The ones that cause cervical cancer are 16 (50% of all cancers), 18 (10- 12%), 31, 33, 45, 53, and 58 making up the rest. The ones that cause genital warts are 6 and 11 which make up 90% of warts.

The vaccine only contains 16, 18, 6, and 11. So you can see that it does not prevent you from getting cancer or warts; it only decreases your risk. What I'm afraid of is that all of these women will get the vaccine and will assume that they don't need Pap smears, which they absolutely still do need. There is all this talk about risk factors for cervical cancer, but the main one is no Pap smears or infrequent Pap smears - if you have you're yearly Pap smear done, the risk of the abnormal cells progressing to cancer before they are caught is extremely low. So keep getting your Paps even if you get the vaccine. (okay, I'll get off my soap box now. This is just a pet peeve of mine, not watching out for yourself)

I know there are some more questions and I'll get to those in a bit. I've got some studying to do before a certification test tomorrow. I hope this little bit has helped, and I'll keep trying with any questions you ladies have.

KnottedYet
03-05-2007, 06:31 PM
My doc knocked my Pap smears down to once every two years. All this is making me think maybe I should go back to once a year.

Kitsune06
03-05-2007, 06:45 PM
This is just a pet peeve of mine, not watching out for yourself).

Damm straight, Btchance, that's my thought on it, too. People shouldn't complain that there are getting to be requirements on having said vaccine. If there're preventative measures out there, one should pursue them. When I can, I intend to get the vacc... I'm 22, so well under their '26' limit, and though I don't sleep around, one never knows. I'd rather be safe than sorry, especially with something like cervical ca and its precursors.

kelownagirl
03-05-2007, 08:00 PM
It has never occured to me to ask to be tested for any of those. Should I be? I am obviously too old for any vaccines (46). Can you be totally symptom-free?

Knot - my doctor only wants to do a pap every 2nd year now too.

LBTC
03-05-2007, 08:54 PM
Knot - my doctor only wants to do a pap every 2nd year now too.

Mine too. Must be the latest trend.


H&B
~T~

btchance
03-06-2007, 02:39 AM
My doc knocked my Pap smears down to once every two years. All this is making me think maybe I should go back to once a year.

The guidelines are that if you are in a stable relationship and have had 3 neg Pap smears in a row, and they use a certain type of Pap, then you can go to every 2 years. you still need a pelvic every year to check the ovaries and uterus, but Paps can be every 2 years.

Edited to add: actually, I'm going to have to go back and double check something here. I know you can definately go to every two years in this circumstances, but there may be some other times. I'll get back to you in a bit on this one.

annisk2000
03-06-2007, 05:20 AM
for those of us without a cervix, you too can get HPV and cervical cancer. I know it sounds crazy, but the cancer can sit up high in the "pocket" left after your cervix is removed.

HPV is rampant among single adults and unfortunatly there is no test for men so they dont' even know if they are carriers. Cervical cancer caused by HPV is usually of a slow growing type. As long as you have regular PAP's, you are in good shape. Once you have a positive PAP from HPV, and you are showing signs of displasia or growths, they usually recommend being checked every 3 months until you have 3 good PAP's in a row. It's actually rare to die from the type of cancer caused by HPV because most women get regualr check ups and it's caught early.

So, if you are "active" and have had a hysterectomy, it's still important to get a PAP. Especially if you've had more than one partner over the course of time.

The worst part is trying to sit in your saddle in the drops after having a Culpo and biopsy.:(

Raindrop
03-06-2007, 08:30 AM
I was treated for cervical cancer in my late twenties and at the time (1980's) I had thought it resulted from my IUD. Knowing what I have read now, I suspect it resulted from HPV even though I had been a virgin when I met my husband. As others have indicated, it doesn't matter if you haven't been active...my husband (now ex) certainly had before we were married, and unfortunately, while we were married:( .

After going through semi-annual pap smears for about six years...I now am only getting annual ones. If I had a daughter, I'd definately have her get the vaccine.

Kitsune06
03-06-2007, 08:45 AM
...just wish the prices weren't so damm high. I wonder if they anticipate lowering the price for the course in light of the high demand?

Damn medical practices- any time a monopoly or necessity can be created, it's exploited for all it's worth. You want to argue this point with me, let's start on insulin. :mad: Profits should not be as much of a goal as they are in the medical world.

HillSlugger
03-07-2007, 06:55 AM
There's a nice NCI review (http://www.cancer.gov/ncicancerbulletin/NCI_Cancer_Bulletin_030607/page2) of that latest HPV epidemiology study that's been in the news. One thing it mentions is that many HPV infections are naturally cleared by the body and pose little cancer risk. Also, infection by the "cancer strains", 6, 11, 16, and 18, was 3.4% overall.

xeney
03-07-2007, 07:36 AM
Just a note on routine testing for HPV ... until two years ago I had Kaiser coverage, and my last PAP test with Kaiser included an HPV test. The doctor told me that Kaiser was now doing this routinely, and if you have a normal PAP plus a negative HPV test, then you can drop your PAP tests down to once every three years instead of every two years. (With the caveat that you should still have them every year if you have a new sex partner or have multiple partners.)

My test was negative, which surprised me a little because I had an awful lot of fun in college. ;)

I have different insurance and a new doctor now, and she didn't think much of Kaiser's three-year regime but did tell me that they will include the HPV test in an annual exam if you ask them to. I also got an HPV test as a routine part of my early pregnancy testing. (Still negative, so I don't have to kill my husband.)

Kitsune06
03-07-2007, 08:48 AM
Ok so there are things a lot of sites etc leave out, and I'm curious, having followed this thread awhile- once it's contracted, are you stuck with it? I keep reading that some infections are cleared from the body, but does it lie dormant like the chicken pox virus- largely non-transmittable, or dormant with outbreaks like herpes simplex?
It troubles me that there's so much people are *not* taught in schools etc, to the point where rumor and urban legend take over. Also, if the virus is cleared from the body in many cases (surely it depends on the strain contracted?) does the cervical ca risk remain? Why then is it so important to vaccinate if it's something one is capable of 'recovering' from?
Sorry to inundate with questions, but as a young 20 something who, at last check, intends to be 'active'... I want to know as much as I can.

HillSlugger
03-07-2007, 09:16 AM
In general "cleared" means gone, not dormant.

HPV is more easily passed on to another person when there are visible warts present and for at least three months afterwards.

Clearing of virus is likely related to strain and to biology/genetics of the individual person. Apparently, if the infection clears there is little (researchers rarely like to say "no") risk of cervical cancer.

Although most women will probably clear most HPV infections, with repeated exposure the odds of a nonclearing infection will increase. Since the link between cervical cancer and HPV infection is strong, and since the vaccination can provide immunity to most infections it will prevent a significant number of cervical cancer cases.


"In 2006, an estimated 10,000 women in the United States will be diagnosed with this type of cancer and nearly 4,000 will die from it. Cervical cancer strikes nearly half a million women each year worldwide, claiming a quarter of a million lives."

There's a lot of good info here (http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/HPV) (the source of that quote).

BTW, I have a 10 yo daughter and will likely get her vaccinated at age 12.

Kitsune06
03-07-2007, 09:28 AM
Thanks MD.
Even seeing the freaky factors (from 50% to 75% women will be infected with it at some point in their lives?!) I think I will pursue the vaccination when it's within my means to do so. I should probably actually be tested before I do so. I didn't have fun in college, but I've been with someone who had, and in multiple countries, and that's reason enough. :( That's the thing about being broke and also not a student- I haven't had an exam since '03. I really need to get a start on that instead of being a hypocrite and b*tching about people not watching themselves. :eek:
Thanks to everyone who's posted on this thread. Things like this are hard for people to talk about, in general, but discussion is so important and so informative to not just people posting but also lurkers.
real insight is often not appreciated enough.

hellosunshine
03-07-2007, 09:31 AM
well,had a smear test today!!!NICE????


now,in the uk you see the dr for free,smear tests are free,prescriptions are 6.50 i think no matter what drug you have,and hospitals are all free-well,u can go private,but ive been lucky and the national health system has always been brill.


so,to what extent do you lot have to pay for stuff?


"the pill"is free but condoms arent unless you can be bothered to trek up the the GU clinic and sit in a room of people all lookingh slightly embarrassed!

Kitsune06
03-07-2007, 10:09 AM
At Planned Parenthood it operates on a sliding scale, though they don't verify employment so I presume people lie about their income to pay less than they should. :( I don't even remember what it was last time I went; I was going for my Depo shots. I've been in since, but for different reasons and didn't get a real exam.

EBD
03-07-2007, 05:37 PM
I am amazed at how much misinformation there is about HPV. I myself had never heard of it . . . until I was diagnosed with it a couple of years ago, after an abnormal pap. Luckily I go to a university medical center with extremely attentive women's health doctors and nurses, so my doctor explained a lot to me - unlike many other gynos here, it seems!

That said, if you are over 40 or married, your doctor probably didn't bring it up because you aren't really at risk anymore. Relax!

First, my doctor did say that *most* young women are infected with HPV at some time in their 20s, but in most people the virus clears by their late 20s without causing problems. (The 1 in 4 figure is for all women ages 14-59 - for women in their twenties the infection rate is estimated to be nearly 50%). One reason it is so prevalent is that the strains of HPV that can cause cervical cancer appear to not cause any ill effects in men. So of COURSE women get it by the droves - the men don't know they have it, and there's no reason for them ever to get tested (I'm not even sure if there is a test for men). Cervical cancer is a major killer of women in some less-developed countries, where women don't have much say in their sex lives AND don't have access to pap smears.

Regular paps should reveal abnormalities caused by HPV with enough time to clear them up before they become cancerous. I had to have two colposcopies and a LEEP procedure to get rid of abnormal cells, but they seem to have done the job. My understanding is that if I go through several normal paps in a row, then the virus may be gone for good.

My boyfriend has never made an issue of my HPV status - and it is clear I didn't get it from him (my parents were also cool about it). The shaming that goes on is ridiculous. These people who don't want girls to get the vaccine because it might cause them to be promiscuous make me crazy. I understand that you wish people would wait until marriage - but you really think CANCER is a just punishment? I do not believe that is what Jesus had in mind.

Also I would like to clarify that the strains of HPV that cause warts and the strains that cause cancer are separate strains of the virus. Warts do not = cancer.

Cha Cha
03-08-2007, 08:07 AM
Timing of this thread couldn't be better - I'm going in for a colpo on Tuesday after my pap came back "atypia" and the HPV was positive. I'm 42 and in a committed relationship, so the HPV had me a little freaked at first, but after reading a lot of good information, learned that it's no reflection of anyone's morals or character or whatever. The virus also can pass thru latex, so condoms are not a reliable preventive.

Here's a very informative website you might want to check out -

http://www.ashastd.org/hpv/hpv_overview.cfm

Okay, climbing down off the soap box now...

Question: I'm a little concerned about how long the colpo will keep me 'out of the saddle' - anybody out there had one that could advise? Thanks so much! I'd rather think about that than the possibility that I have cancer... though fortunately, 'atypia' is not usually a big cause for concern. Keep your fingers crossed, please!

Amy

Grog
03-08-2007, 08:22 AM
Question: I'm a little concerned about how long the colpo will keep me 'out of the saddle' - anybody out there had one that could advise? Thanks so much! I'd rather think about that than the possibility that I have cancer... though fortunately, 'atypia' is not usually a big cause for concern. Keep your fingers crossed, please!

Amy,

Good luck for your colpo. I've had quite a few of those. I was not cycling at the time but I don't think it would have kept me out of the saddle more than one day. I distinctly remember that getting my cervix scratched made me feel like I feel on the first day of my periods, which entails lower back and right thigh pain. And sometimes some bleeding. That lasted no more than a day.

It might be different for you but if it's properly done I don't think it should keep you out of the saddle for that long.

chickwhorips
03-08-2007, 09:30 AM
Question: I'm a little concerned about how long the colpo will keep me 'out of the saddle' - anybody out there had one that could advise? Thanks so much! I'd rather think about that than the possibility that I have cancer... though fortunately, 'atypia' is not usually a big cause for concern. Keep your fingers crossed, please!

fingers are crossed. i had one done about three years ago. the first couple of days i was quite sore. its not the most comfortable thing to have done. my doc told me to take some ibuprofens before i went it. i'm glad i did.

i too wasn't biking at the time and don't know how long you maybe out. hopefully not to long.

trickytiger
03-08-2007, 10:04 AM
Whew- this feels a little personal, but:

I was diagnosed with HPV strain 16 (the bad cancer-related one) about three years ago, after a scary (level 4 out of 5, when 5 means cancer) pap result. I knew for sure I got it from my boyfriend at the time, so at the very least now he knows he's a carrier. I had a colpo with good results - my body cleared the bad cells very quickly, and haven't had any bad paps since. That relationship is long gone and for good reasons, but the end result is that I take care of myself better- I was advised to get lots of sleep, eat well, exercise lots, and actively search out ways to reduce stress to enable my body to continue to keep the virus repressed and to "clear" it. I've taken that advice seriously- so at least some good came out of this!

I don't like the "moral" arguments against the vaccine at all. It's not a moral issue to me, and the focus just seems to "punish" women for having sex- as if you "deserve" cancer. No one deserves it!

Grog
03-08-2007, 01:43 PM
Just a note on HPV transmission...

BTChance might have better info, but I was told at the time of my colposcopies that I could have been infected at any point during the previous 5-7 years, and that it can take quite a bit of time before symptoms become apparent. It was also noted to me that condoms didn't 100% protect women from getting it.


Without of course being careless, I think we should remain calm about infections like HPV and HSV (herpes). There are SO MANY carriers around that we wouldn't touch anyone if we didn't want to get anything. I realized recently that I have HSV antibodies, which means I have been exposed to the herpes virus. Who knows whether it's the oral (mouth, HSV-1) or genital (HSV-2) form. I come from a tradition where people kiss a lot (within the family, acquaintances etc.) and it's absolutely likely that I have caught it from some family member as a tiny kid. I don't have symptoms (warts), but I might nonetheless be shedding the virus sometimes. Will my partner and I have protected sex for the rest of our life to prevent him from being exposed to the virus? We've discussed it together and the answer is : no. It's not HIV. It's herpes. (I'm aware of the risks if there are active infection sites during childbirth, and we'll take care of that when the day comes, if necessary, of course.)

And in all cases it's not a moral issue. It's a virus.

Moreover, recently, I have heard more and more of the hypothesis according to which some virus actually protect us. Someone posted the example of the link between obesity and some virus: those who have been exposed to said virus (can't remember which) are less likely to be obese than those who haven't. I can easily imagine that our knowledge on viruses is VERY limited. An interesting book was recently published, Survival of the Sickest (http://www.amazon.com/Survival-Sickest-Medical-Maverick-Discovers/dp/0060889659), I wonder if some of you guys have given it a look. I think it's far from a definitive view, but probably attempting to live in a sterile world hasn't done us only good...

Wahine
03-08-2007, 02:56 PM
Thank yo for that Grog. I think you covered a lot of issues that needed to be exposed.

Kitsune06
03-08-2007, 03:22 PM
+1, Wahine. Thank you, Grog

btchance
03-08-2007, 04:00 PM
The guidelines are that if you are in a stable relationship and have had 3 neg Pap smears in a row, and they use a certain type of Pap, then you can go to every 2 years. you still need a pelvic every year to check the ovaries and uterus, but Paps can be every 2 years.

Edited to add: actually, I'm going to have to go back and double check something here. I know you can definately go to every two years in this circumstances, but there may be some other times. I'll get back to you in a bit on this one.


This is all correct. You can also do Paps every 2 years if a certain type of Pap is done (a thin prep), in comparision to the more traditional ones. As xeney pointed out, some doctors are not willing to do the every 2 years, and of course, any time you change partners, you need to be retested.

btchance
03-08-2007, 04:06 PM
Just a note on HPV transmission...

BTChance might have better info, but I was told at the time of my colposcopies that I could have been infected at any point during the previous 5-7 years, and that it can take quite a bit of time before symptoms become apparent. It was also noted to me that condoms didn't 100% protect women from getting it.


Without of course being careless, I think we should remain calm about infections like HPV and HSV (herpes). There are SO MANY carriers around that we wouldn't touch anyone if we didn't want to get anything. I realized recently that I have HSV antibodies, which means I have been exposed to the herpes virus. Who knows whether it's the oral (mouth, HSV-1) or genital (HSV-2) form. I come from a tradition where people kiss a lot (within the family, acquaintances etc.) and it's absolutely likely that I have caught it from some family member as a tiny kid. I don't have symptoms (warts), but I might nonetheless be shedding the virus sometimes. Will my partner and I have protected sex for the rest of our life to prevent him from being exposed to the virus? We've discussed it together and the answer is : no. It's not HIV. It's herpes. (I'm aware of the risks if there are active infection sites during childbirth, and we'll take care of that when the day comes, if necessary, of course.)

And in all cases it's not a moral issue. It's a virus.

Moreover, recently, I have heard more and more of the hypothesis according to which some virus actually protect us. Someone posted the example of the link between obesity and some virus: those who have been exposed to said virus (can't remember which) are less likely to be obese than those who haven't. I can easily imagine that our knowledge on viruses is VERY limited. An interesting book was recently published, Survival of the Sickest (http://www.amazon.com/Survival-Sickest-Medical-Maverick-Discovers/dp/0060889659), I wonder if some of you guys have given it a look. I think it's far from a definitive view, but probably attempting to live in a sterile world hasn't done us only good...



Grog, you're right about the time frame. HPV takes years (often 10+) to transform cells into cancer, which in itself is a pretty rare event. You're also right that condoms aren't perfect - like with HIV, they decrease the risk, but don't prevent it. And yes, don't freak out if you have HPV. It is extremely, extremely common - and if caught early, the problems it can cause are treatable.

I haven't seen anything about the hypothesis you're talking about. But it is true that there is a huge amount of stuff we don't know about, and we're constantly learning. (I also haven't heard of the book)

Kitsune06
03-08-2007, 07:47 PM
Thanks for your posts and advice, too, BTChance. :)

Cha Cha
03-12-2007, 10:06 AM
I'll post on Wednesday how it goes... I'll remember the 'vitamin I' (ibuprofen) beforehand too.

Thanks again - you're the best!

Amy

ps had a great 15 mi hilly ride with the DBF yesterday, only my 4th outing but it went well and he was proud of me. What a sweetie!

Meaux
03-12-2007, 07:11 PM
I had a colpo nearly five years ago and my test came back positive for stage 1 dysplasia so then I had to have a cryocautery done. No fun at all. (I wasn't cycling then.) The whole thing was really scary and I was so uninformed about the entire situation. I had to have semi-annual exams and smears for three years and the last one came back abnormal. Lucky for me, I haven't had to go through the whole colpo/cryo again. It's just frustrating for me, because there is still so little information about all of this. In TX, they were talking about having the vaccine be mandatory for students over 11, which I thought was fantastic, however, they'd still have to pay full price (not so fantastic). I just get frustrated with the people who say that giving young girls the vaccine will encourage them to have premarital sex. I'm going to stop now, before I go on the crazy woman rant that I usually go on. I just know that I would like other women/girls to not have to go through the discomfort/pain and stress that I went through when I had all of that happen.

maillotpois
03-13-2007, 06:55 AM
Wow - thanks for the good discussion. And good luck Cha Cha!

I had initially dismissed the vaccine as being unnecessary if one has regular paps - but I didn't understand the HPV connection. I'm 40 and not a candidate, but this is certainly all good food for thought for my daughter in a couple of years.

Thanks.

horsemom
03-14-2007, 04:53 AM
Wow, I am amazed at how many of us have gone through the same thing. I too had dsyplasic cells show on a pap, underwent two colops and subsequent cauterizations in the late 90s, when I was in my late 20s. I did it all alone, afraid to tell anyone....silly, now that I think about it.

Since then I have had good paps and recently during an exam had the nurse mention the test for HPV. She wasn't sure if my insurance would pay, but I said to do it anyway, and it was negative (ins must have paid, I never saw a bill.) My body and the procedures must have taken care of the virus---after all these years it was a load off my mind.

It is amazing that I never talked about it with anyone. I am so glad you all are here so someone else doesn't have to go through that alone.

Laura

Cha Cha
03-14-2007, 07:57 AM
Just wanted to LYK, everything with the colpo went fine, Dr said he didn't see anything at all and there was nothing to be concerned about. There was a little burning with the vinegar, but aside from some very minor discomfort (about like a regular pap), it was painless. Hooray!

Thanks again for the encouraging words, it means a lot!

Amy

pyxichick
03-30-2007, 05:41 PM
There's an ongoing clinical study right now on HPV vaccines in older women. I almost got to participate in the trial, but found out later I couldn't because of some medication I'm taking for my colitis. But, I would've definitely participated if I could. They are giving free vaccines and paying $400 to participate in a 2 year study.

chickwhorips
03-30-2007, 10:41 PM
i just got my pap back and its abnormal again. i have to go in and have another colposcopy done. though i was told at my age (26) yes for sure get the vaccine.

BleeckerSt_Girl
03-31-2007, 04:13 AM
Well, gotta say here that it creeps me out to no end that the one paharmaceutical company has just invented this vaccine and have NOT tested it longterm on ANYONE yet and now they want to inject a series of it into every little girl in the US by law. No one knows what long term side effects this vaccine might have.
Who stands to gain the most profit from this vaccine?- well the pharmaceutical company that invented it of course- they'll make BILLIONS and BILLIONS of dollars off this patented drug and they are the ONLY ones who paid MILLIONS of dollars of funding to get legislators to try to pass laws requiring it for all little girls. They are the ones funding the entire rushed push to force the sale of millions of these vaccine series to parents all over the country (at something like $350 per series). I suspect more big money is at stake here than for any other newly invented and patented drug in history.
Just my 2 cents, and there's no way I would inject this untested vaccine into my two little girls...I'm glad they're all grown up already and won't be forced by law to be guinea pigs for the big drug companies.

matagi
04-01-2007, 02:36 AM
Lisa, whilst I can understand your concern, I feel I must point out that this is not an untested product. It has gone through clinical testing which includes human testing prior to its release on the market.

Basically you have to look at the risks vs benefits ... what are the potential risks and benefits of the vaccine compared to HPV infection with its risk of developing cervical cancer and the associated sequelae?

Oh yes, and just to clarify - the vaccine was not "invented" by this one pharmaceutical company. It was in fact developed in Australia by Professor Ian Frazer, an immunologist, and the technology was licensed to Merck for further development.

EBD
04-01-2007, 08:27 AM
I also understand the concern about long-term effects, but if we waited to see if the subjects in clinical trials had any effects 40 years later, there would be an additional 40 year lag before we could take advantage of any new medical technology! That may be the most prudent approach, but it's not realistic.

On the topic of the vaccine only being for young girls - my mom (who works in medical research) tells me that there is some research indicating that the vaccine might help women who are already HPV positive to shed the virus faster. Since I've tested positive, I'm going to ask at my pap next week.

BleeckerSt_Girl
04-01-2007, 10:55 AM
I do hear what you are all saying. I'm no fan of cervical cancer, and I'm not generally anti-vaccine. I just think about this one differently. I think a minimum 10 year study on some volunteer young girl subjects would be ethical before mandating injecting the entire nation of millions of young girls. At least find out if it leads to later fertility problems or birth defects first.
Merck Pharmaceuticals has invested big money in pushing the mandatory vaccination law proposals, and stands to become filthy rich (again).

Tuckervill
04-01-2007, 04:45 PM
Lisa, I just wanted to say that I agree with you, that we should be more cautious about what we inject in our children. It's the mandatory nature that I disagree with.

Karen

matagi
04-01-2007, 10:56 PM
I do hear what you are all saying. I'm no fan of cervical cancer, and I'm not generally anti-vaccine. I just think about this one differently. I think a minimum 10 year study on some volunteer young girl subjects would be ethical before mandating injecting the entire nation of millions of young girls. At least find out if it leads to later fertility problems or birth defects first.
By what mechanism do you think it is going to cause birth defects or fertility problems? The vaccine is designed to stimulate the immune system against the virus. If the vaccine has the potential to cause those problems, then the virus itself would have the same effect and I don't think there have been any reports linking HPV to birth defects or fertility problems (other than the obvious one that occurs after you've had half your insides taken out because of cancer).

I agree that there should be more discussion before any proposal for mandatory vaccination is considered but more from a cost-benefit perspective than a risk of adverse reactions.

Grog
04-02-2007, 06:40 AM
Well the only thing I can think of is that HPV might have a role that we don't know about yet in... something we don't know about yet.

Otherwise, vaccines are a pretty well-understood technology.

I generally agree with Lisa SH that pharm companies are a powerful lobby, and that this decision to make the vaccine mandatory (can anyone post a link to information about this "mandatory" thing?????) might be no stranger to that.

However it's also common to give a given vaccine to everyone of a generation so that the disease is eradicated. But then boys should get it too, since they will keep transmitting it. By vaccinating only girls, aren't we perpetuating the problem (and making an eternal market for the vaccine)?

matagi
04-02-2007, 01:25 PM
Boys can't get cervical cancer, so the immediate cost benefit is not there, even though males can be asymptomatic carriers of HPV. I believe there are trials currently underway assessing the vaccine in boys, because males can get anal cancers from HPV. FWIW, the guy that developed the vaccine has had both his sons vaccinated against HPV. In Australia the vaccine has been made available to females aged 12-26 free of charge. Boys can also receive the vaccine but you need to pay for it.

I guess it is analogous to rubella vaccine - in Australia, girls were the first to be vaccinated because of the consequences of rubella in pregnant women. The vaccine has subsequently been made available to everyone and is now part of our routine childhood immunisation program, which means both boys and girls receive the vaccine.

What is the situation in the US if this vaccine becomes mandatory? Are you expected to pay for it, or do you get it free of charge?

HillSlugger
04-02-2007, 01:37 PM
What is the situation in the US if this vaccine becomes mandatory? Are you expected to pay for it, or do you get it free of charge?

There are many immunizations that are mandatory. For the majority, we are expected to have it covered by medical insurance. They are free through special programs to only those you can't otherwise cover the cost

Pika
05-11-2007, 08:06 PM
I read this thread with great interest- it seems like ages ago now..
today my sister is off to surgery in vancouver for ovarian cancer:(
I don't know if there is a link but she did have HPV.
The whole thing is very scarey- until 3 weeks ago I was running with her weekly- she seemed in good health - although she was complaining more of abdominal cramping and pain after she ate.
I find it shocking how quickly one's health can deteriorate.
Today when she left, she looked like the living dead:( God: it is awful!
We won't know too much until after the surgery- ie whether it has metastasized and to what extent- hmmmm I am sick with worry and regret- I wished i had spoken up when she looked worn out, I wished I had pushed her more to see another Dr when she first complained of odd abdominal pain 10 yrs ago...I just feel sad about the whole thing.

crazycanuck
05-11-2007, 09:35 PM
(((((((PIKA)))))))))

Don't feel like it's your fault Pika-Even if you had said something, she may not have heeded your advice. You're not a bad person.

Sending good thoughts your way. Please keep us updated on your sister.

Take care

c

Grog
05-12-2007, 07:33 AM
{{{Pika}}}

Don't worry too much okay, that's not going to help her anyway. Focus on recovery.

Good luck.

Wahine
05-12-2007, 08:59 AM
(((((((Pika))))))))

I'm so sorry you're going through this. I know that this is very difficult for you. CC is right, it's not your fault and you need to try to let go of the guilt. Not easy. I'll be saying blessings for you and your sister in my meditations.

Take care.

Running Mommy
05-12-2007, 11:16 AM
OMG OMG OMG!!!! Ok, this is scary!! I so hope that she is ok. But on a selfish note what you posted is beyond scary to me. You see when I was IM training I had some bad cramping and a bit of bleeding. I've had cervical cancer so I went to the doc. The pap came up ok, but she said I had an ovary that "didn't look quite right" and she wanted me to have some tests on it at an OB who specializes in such stuff. Well I've put it off for two months now.
But after what I just read, I will be calling the doctor MONDAY!!!
OH man!!! I sure hope she is ok! I'll be doing the Subaru womens tri in Oct. that benefits ovarian cancer research, so I would love to run it for her!
Give her my best! I'll be praying for the entire Pika family!!
Denise

Pika
05-12-2007, 03:22 PM
Thank-you for all the well wishes and prayers. We are hoping she will have surgery today- though I haven't heard anything yet so that may mean tomorrow!
RM don't delay! I guess if I will have learned anything from this it will be to keep asking questions until I am satisfied with the answer.
I do believe we must take responsibility for our own health, that being said my sis is a non-smoker/non-drinker/exerciser who didn't eat crap.
What she did have was a mystery abdominal pain that would come and go- stay away for many months just to return to make her sick( crampy) but no missed day at work or anything.
She was told it "was in her head", that she had some parasite that "everyone has but you are just more sensitive".
I know I will listen to my body more closely now and get answers when needed.
Thanks again everyone:)

Triskeliongirl
05-21-2007, 06:40 PM
Boys can't get cervical cancer, so the immediate cost benefit is not there, even though males can be asymptomatic carriers of HPV.

Actually, I learned recently from a virologist colleague that indeed gay men can get anal cancer from HPV, yet the vaccine has never been tested in men and is not available to men. While a women can live without a cervix and man cannot live without an anus, so this appears to be real discrimination.

DrBadger
05-21-2007, 08:12 PM
Actually, I learned recently from a virologist colleague that indeed gay men can get anal cancer from HPV, yet the vaccine has never been tested in men and is not available to men. While a women can live without a cervix and man cannot live without an anus, so this appears to be real discrimination.

it is true the HPV can cause cancer in men, it is just much more rare than cervical cancer in women. However, Merk is currently in the process of doing clinical trials of the vaccine on men (in addition to the trials on women > 26 yrs old, and who have already been exposed to HPV), so it is very likely that in the future men would be inocculated also.

PABadger...who has now completed her 3-shot HPV series!!!

Laterider21958
05-21-2007, 11:55 PM
Has anybody considered another way this virus could be contracted? We all go to the Dr. for pap smears at some time or another, and many of us have given birth (often assisted, not entirely natural), but has anyone ever asked whether the equipment used at such times has been sterilised effectively or at all? I'm sure that the task would be relegated to an administrative assistant in the Dr.'s Clinic. Everybody has bad days where we aren't on top of everything and forget stuff. We all just assume that the "right" thing has been done. Perhaps we need to enquire about this before allowing medical instruments to be inserted. Just a thought.

Jolt
05-22-2007, 06:15 AM
Actually, I learned recently from a virologist colleague that indeed gay men can get anal cancer from HPV, yet the vaccine has never been tested in men and is not available to men. While a women can live without a cervix and man cannot live without an anus, so this appears to be real discrimination.

Not entirely accurate--he can live without an anus but will have to live with a colostomy (not pleasant)!

Jolt
05-22-2007, 06:17 AM
Has anybody considered another way this virus could be contracted? We all go to the Dr. for pap smears at some time or another, and many of us have given birth (often assisted, not entirely natural), but has anyone ever asked whether the equipment used at such times has been sterilised effectively or at all? I'm sure that the task would be relegated to an administrative assistant in the Dr.'s Clinic. Everybody has bad days where we aren't on top of everything and forget stuff. We all just assume that the "right" thing has been done. Perhaps we need to enquire about this before allowing medical instruments to be inserted. Just a thought.

YUCK!!!, but that's a good point. Instruments that have been used on someone with the virus and not properly sterilized could very likely pass it on (not sure how long it can live outside the body though--anyone?)

Dianyla
05-22-2007, 10:19 AM
PABadger...who has now completed her 3-shot HPV series!!!
Yo, thanks for the reminder! I just scheduled my annual OB/GYN appointment and will be requesting the HPV vaccine series at that time. :)

Kitsune06
05-22-2007, 10:27 AM
I will as soon as I have medical ins. ... not quite looking fwd to it tho. I hear they hurt. :(

Dianyla
05-22-2007, 10:34 AM
... not quite looking fwd to it tho. I hear they hurt. :(
Heard that which hurts? A pelvic/pap, or the vaccine?

Kitsune06
05-22-2007, 10:39 AM
The vaccine, though come to think of it, I haven't seen a gyno for ..uh... entirely too long.

DrBadger
05-22-2007, 11:37 AM
I will as soon as I have medical ins. ... not quite looking fwd to it tho. I hear they hurt. :(

Yup, sorry to say the vaccine does hurt. At my clinic they found that injecting it slowly was actually better. talk to the nurse givning the injection about it. I found the first one hurt the most (a bit of lingering pain the rest of the day), the second and third hurt when they were given, but not afterwards. However, even though the HPV vaccine hurts to get, it is no where near as bad a tetanus shot! Those suckers hurt for days!

Dianyla
05-22-2007, 11:38 AM
The vaccine, though come to think of it, I haven't seen a gyno for ..uh... entirely too long.
Well, most shots are relatively unpleasant. But I doubt that the HPV injections could even hold a candle to getting the nips pierced. :rolleyes:

I'm envisioning something like a tetanus shot. Ow.

DrBadger
05-22-2007, 12:01 PM
I'm envisioning something like a tetanus shot. Ow.

Not really like the tetanus shot.... it burns during injection at the site, and down the arm. Apparently it is because of the silver carrying solution they use. When I got the first shot I got occastional burning sensations and twinges in my wrist and hand for the rest of the day, but the other two only hurt during the injection. In that sense it is better than the tetanus shot which makes your arm hurt for days afterwards! While not pleasent, it is really not that bad, and I am willing to put up with a little pain to (hopefully) protect myself from cancer, especially since my Mom had cervical cancer!

Jolt
05-22-2007, 12:04 PM
However, even though the HPV vaccine hurts to get, it is no where near as bad a tetanus shot! Those suckers hurt for days!

Yes, they do! I find the flu shot just as bad if not slightly worse, as well. Feels like the aftereffects of a good punch to the arm.

damsel
06-18-2007, 08:34 PM
I know this thread was a few weeks ago now, but i've just read it with interest and have wanted to have a little complain to someone about HPV and the cervical cancer vaccine for a while now. At 25 I've just been diagnosed with HPV (one of the visible genital wart strains) after only ever sleeping with the one guy recently and on only two occasions (ie he was the first guy i slept with). I know it is a very common virus, but it doesn't take away the embarrassment that i feel now. I have enough issues with relationships and I know it shouldn't, but having HPV is going to make me think twice about getting into another relationship with the fear of passing it on to someone i care about.
I thought i was pretty well educated on STDs, but had never been educated about HPV. Why isn't HPV as widely 'advertised' as a prevalant STD as much as other STDs are? Maybe it is elswhere but not where i come from. Further to that, the cervical cancer vaccine has only recently been launched in Australia but very little of the advertising material actually says what it is vaccinating against - not cancer itself but a few strains of a common STD - HPV- that can cause cancer. This is really frustrating becasue i wonder how many other women/girls out there were like me - not even considering getting the vaccine because i didn't think it was necessary (mostly because of no history of it in the family). If the vaccine was/is advertised properly for what it does & how common HPV is, rather than avoiding what i can only gather is either a) a tabu subject (ie HPV), b) that doctors think that everyone knows about HPV or c) leaving it up to women to traul the internet or book in to see a doctor to get more info, then more women/girls might consider getting the vaccine. It wasn't until i was diagnosed with HPV that i started researching the virus that I found out what the vaccine actaually does. The doctor who diagnosed it mentioned that i was elegable for the vaccine but didn't even go into any detail beyond that.

Sorry for the rant, but thanks for listening
Damsel

HillSlugger
06-19-2007, 06:56 AM
I know it is a very common virus, but it doesn't take away the embarrassment that i feel now. I have enough issues with relationships and I know it shouldn't, but having HPV is going to make me think twice about getting into another relationship with the fear of passing it on to someone i care about.

Please try to get over being embarrassed; there's really no need for that. It's unfortunate, but you didn't do anything wrong. Sure, caution may be warranted but please don't let this keep you from enjoying life.

In the US there's a drug that a person can take to reduce the chance of passing along the infection. I've seen it advertised on TV but I don't know what it's called. Please talk to your doctor about this and about how to move forward with your life with confidence.

Take care, Nicole

madisongrrl
06-23-2007, 10:09 AM
Here are a few good sources of information

http://www.cdc.gov/std/hpv/

http://www.plannedparenthood.org/sexual-health/std/hpv.htm

madisongrrl
06-23-2007, 10:23 AM
The virus also can pass thru latex, so condoms are not a reliable preventive.


It's not that it passes though latex (it doesn't), it's that latex doesn't cover all of your skin. It spreads though skin-to-skin contact.