Human Papiloma Virus Test (HPV Genotyping & PAP Smear)
Also Known As: HPV DNA, High-risk HPV, hrHPV, HPV mRNA, etc
Formal Name: Genital Human Papillomavirus
The human papillomavirus (HPV) test screens for the presence of the human
papillomavirus, a virus that can result to the development of genital warts, abnormal cervical cells or cervical cancer.
Your doctor may recommend the HPV test if:
Your Pap test was unusual, showing atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS).
You're age 30 or older.
The HPV screening is available only to women; no HPV test yet exists to identify the virus in men. However, men can be afftected with HPV and pass the virus along to their sex partners.
When To Get Tested?
Pap smear preferable at 5 years interval or HPV molecular test alone every 5 years (alternative strategy) when you are a woman at 30 to 65 years old with standard risk.
You may be tested at a younger age and more regularly if you have risk factors, such as a weakened immune system or individual history of precancerous lesions.
If you are a woman within 21 to 29 years old and have an abnormal Pap smear report.
A sample of cells is taken from the cervical region during a pelvic exam using a swab or small brush. The sample is then kept in a bottle containing a special liquid preservative. The same sample of cells can serve for both the Pap smear and the HPV test.
Test Preparation Needed?
It is basically recommended that you desist from having sex, douching, or using vaginal products such as creams, deodorants, or medications for 24 hours before the test. Abide to any instructions you are given. Reschedule the test if you are on your period (menstruating). It may be required of you to empty your bladder before the examination.
What is being tested?
Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a collection of more than 150 related viruses. Some types of HPV are considered high risk because they can be cancerous. HPV testing identifies the genetic material (DNA or messengerRNA) of high-risk HPV (hrHPV), basically to screen for cervicalcancer or to determine whether you may be at risk of cervical cancer.
Some kinds of HPV can cause skin warts, while others can cause genital warts (also called condylomata). Genital HPV infection is one of the mainly common sexuallytransmitteddiseases (i.e., spread through oral, anal, or genital sex).
Low-risk HPV—some HPV strains lead to genital warts but barely cause cancer. HPV 6 and HPV 11 cause 90% of all genital warts however are considered "low risk" because they rarely cause cancer. These low-risk types can be diagnosed by visual inspection and, therefore, do not need testing.
Many HPV infections do not require treatment for recuperation —the body is able to clear the infection. However, infections with high-risk HPV types that do not resolve can lead to cervical cancer. About all cervical cancers are caused by stubborn infections with high-risk HPV.
In addition, some studies have also revealed that persistent oral infections with high-risk types of HPV are strongly related with oral cancers, as well as cancer of the mouth and throat (oropharyngeal cancer). Anal cancer has also been associated to HPV types 16 and 18. These types are also linked to other cancers, such as those of the vagina and penis.
Disclaimer: The information provided herein is for patient general knowledge only and should not be used during any medical emergency, for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Duplication for personal and commercial use must be authorized in writing by Surjen.com.
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