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National Cervical Cancer Coalition


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 Post subject: New Here and Need Help!
PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2007 11:54 pm 

Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 11:51 pm
Posts: 1
I just found this forum and I've read some of the responses you guys give here and am OVERWHELMINGLY pleased with them. I feel like you guys really care and can actually answer some questions for me so just to warn you, there are a few of them! But hopefully you guys can help..

So my situation is this:

Around October (2006) my girlfriend was diagnosed with Genital Warts.
She's on the pill and we had frequent unprotected sex.

So I also went in for a check-up and have a very small wart around the head of my penis, but the doctor said that it's so small that it wouldn't be worth it to remove.
To put it in her words, removing it could leave scar tissue on my penis and that instead I could just wait for my immune system to fight it off itself.

So question #1 would be:
Will it just go away on its own?
I started taking Multi-vitamins and excersizing more to "boost" my immune system some. Is this helping/necessary?

When my girlfriend was diagnosed, she got two of them removed. We then decided to only have protected sex from then on, but at times we would still have unprotected sex (when emotions got the best of us).
When she went in for a check-up recently, the ones that were removed did not grow back but a new one grew (and close to the opening of the cervix).

So question #2 is:
Did I "give it back" to her? Is the reason why they came back because we had unprotected sex again?

We have decided to abstain until her next check-up (1 month).

Question #3:
If they aren't gone by then, should we be worried?
What can she do to prevent their recurrance?

She is also currently taking multi-vitamins and although she does not like vegetables I'm trying to have her eat them.

Question #4:
Is the wart near the cervix dangerous?
We are, of course, unreasonably worried about it being cancerous - only because the doctor kept mentioning it.

And then just some other things I'm wondering about..

Question #5:
Could it be that because she doesn't eat vegetables (before this incident) that she was more suceptible to Genital Warts/HPV? Or that it will take longer for her to fight them off because her immune system is not as strong as it should be?

Question #6:
What else can we do to try to limit the effects of HPV?
I recommended the vaccine but now that she has it, will it even help?

Thank you very much for reading and I'll be checking back often!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2007 10:19 am 
Site Admin

Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 4:08 pm
Posts: 2122
Location: North Carolina
Hello ConcernedAboutHer,

Welcome to our message boards; I'm glad some of our discussions have been helpful.

Read this excerpt from a reply I posted not long ago to a similar question:

Quote:
A great deal remains unknown about transmission patterns among couples and the guidance (including ours) is often inconsistent and confusing, to say the least. Many couples do choose to abstain while warts are present but there are experts who don't think it is likely couples sharing the same HPV type(s) will "ping-pong" the virus back and forth to reinfect each, and we're not aware of any data that indicate this is likely to be an issue. Some studies do suggest that using condoms might help both the virus and associated skin lesions clear a bit more quickly, and sometimes couples feel more comfortable having protected sex.

It may be that you and your [partner] reach a point where you feel that you can have sex without a condom. Warts do recur in some cases, but by no means all. When they do recur, they show varying degrees of persistence. Some people may experience only one episode, while others may experience several. However, most people's immune systems, with time, seem to gain control over HPV, making recurrences less frequent and usually eliminating them eventually. In most cases, HPV will not be a persistent infection, but it can be hard to predict when "natural immunity" fully develops.


As for the lesion detected near your partner's cervix, it isn't clear just how her health care provider is describing it: as a wart (which it very well could be) or a precancerous cell change (which typically involves an HPV type other than those that cause warts)?. Genital warts, even those near the cervix, are not really associated with an increased risk of cervical cancer.

"High risk" HPV types that cause cervical lesions actually do not progress to cancer very often, and cervical cancer is essentially preventable through regular Pap tests and, if needed, treatment. Have her provider sort out her exact diagnosis and the follow up care she needs, if there is any confusion about this.

Not too much re: definitive guidelines on health and lifestyle matters with HPV, other than not smoking. A common sense approach to good health in general is a good idea, such as managing stress, moderate exercise, multivitamin, and the like. You do see references in some of the literature about folic acid (B vitamins, essentially) and beta-carotene being recommended - read more on a previous thread at http://www.ashastd.org/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=146.

Re: the HPV vaccine, Gardasil, it is approved for use with females ages 9-26 and is not designed to have "therapeutic" value to treat HPV in those who already have the virus. Still, women who receive Gardasil may still receive protection against the HPV types covered by the vaccine that they don't have. Regular Pap tests are needed even for women who receive the vaccine.

I hope this helps.

All the best,
Fredo

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