STI Tutorial & Quiz
Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
HPV is a very common virus that causes GENITAL WARTS.
After chlamydia, it is the second most common STI in England.
There are loads of types of HPV. Some types cause the common warts you get on your hands, and some cause verrucas – warts on the soles of your feet.
Certain types of HPV are passed on through anal and vaginal sex, causing GENITAL WARTS that grow on the penis, on the vulva, on the neck of the womb (cervix) and around the anus. These warts are usually painless (like a common wart) but occasionally can be tender or itchy.
The big problem with HPV is that SOME types are associated with cancer.
In women, HPV can lead to cancer of the cervix or the vulva, and in men it can lead to cancer of the penis.
Genital warts are difficult to treat. They can be burned or frozen off, but this is not aways successful, and... well, burning on your genitals? Sounds pretty painful to me.
Some really good news is that scientists have recently developed a VACCINE against certain types of HPV which are associated with CANCER. This means that an injection will protect people against these types of HPV.