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HPV – Important Details and Package Prices
HPV – What You Need To Know


 First off, let’s clarify these two notions.

 

HPV & Cervical Cancer


 They are simply not just one and the same thing



1HPV


Human Papillomavirus, HPV, is a colossal viral system with over 130 subtypes identified. Each strain has a different virulence and can be divided into low-risk and high-risk types that can cause warts in mild cases and cancer in severe. For example, HPV-6 and HPV-11 can cause abnormal growths in the genital areas, such as warts, but these are not carcinogenic; however, HPV-16 and HPV-18 are the main pathogenic types of cervical cancer.


2Cervical Cancer

When cancer originates in the cervix, the lesions that form within the cervix is what becomes cervical cancer. At present, cervical cancer stands as the second most common cancer in women, breast cancer being number one. Research has shown, almost all instances of cervical cancer (99%) are related to HPV. This makes cervical cancer to be the only tumor to have a clear cause.

 

Now, with an understanding of the relationship between HPV and Cervical cancer, let’s take a deeper look into its route of infection, cancer rate and preventative vaccinations. 


01

HPV Route of Infection



This highly contagious virus lives dormant in males and females and is most commonly spread during sexual intercourse. The rate of infection increases rapidly after a persons first sexual encounter, and has a cumulative rate of infection increasing annually.


Studies have estimated that more than 80% - 90%, respectively, of sexually active men and women will be infected with at least one type of HPV at some point in their lives. Some media platforms have boasted the rate of women infected with HPV after sex is as common as the common cold. Moreover, the younger a women begins sexually activity, the more partners she has, and long-term use of oral contraceptives and unprotected sexual behavior will cause an increase in the relative risk of cervical cancer. Although the use of condoms can significantly reduce the risk of HPV infection, there is no *** guarantee.

 

Although sexual transmission is the main route of transmission, it is not the only method. Transmission is also possible through genital contact with objects containing the HPV virus such as, toilets, swimming pools, public towels, etc, making the possibility for infection even greater.



02
If Infected with HPV, Does that mean you will get Cervical Cancer?


No. Most HPV infections clear without any intervention within 2 years and are medically referred to as "transient infections"; A small proportion of infections withcertain types of HPV can persist and progress to cervical cancer. Although low-risk HPV strains are almost never cancerous, prolonged infection can lead to genital warts or very subtle changes in cervical cells. Therefore, HPV is still dangerous in regards to persistent infection.

 

Due to the fact that most HPV infections are present with no symptoms and are painless, by the time a patient seeks medical advice about their condition, they have already entered into the late stages of cancer.

 

At present, there is no cure for HPV. Therefore, early detection to determine whether you are precancerous and treatment of precancerous lesions can prevent cervical cancer developing down the line. Cervical cancer is about prevention and screening.


03

 How to Prevent Against HPV?



1) First Priority: Get Inoculated

HPV is the main cause of cervical cancer. The HPV vaccine is the primary method to prevent cancer. According to “The Lancet”, the world's leading medical journal: The HPV vaccine has been proven effective in preventing cervical cancer in developed countries, and the prevalence of cervical cancer in women post-vaccination has significantly reduced within 5 to 8 years. This may help to eliminate cervical cancer in developed countries within decades.


2)Be Smart about your Sexual Health

Remain with one sexual partner, take care of your hygiene, don’t enter into sexual activity too early and avoid contact with infections of medical origin.


3)Boost your Immune System

Exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet, good daily habits and improved mood will all work towards boosting your immune system to fight against infection.


4)Undergo Regular Screenings for Cervical Cancer

There are usually two criteria screened for during a Cervical Cancer screening: a Thinprep Cytology Test (TCT) and High-Risk Human Papillomavirus (HR-HPV) test.


5)Avoid Long-Term use of Oral Contraceptives

Charges in hormone levels can lead to persistent HPV infection and progression of the disease. Your choice of contraceptive should be informative and smart to suit your long-term contraceptive needs.


6)Maintain Good Hygiene Habits

Sharing of toiletries and other such hygiene habits can increase your risk of HPV infection, in turn leading to an increased risk of cervical cancer.



04

Women married with children, should they bother with inoculation?



The handbook “Guideline for prevention and control of Cervical Cancer”, published in 2017 by the Chinese Preventative Medicine Association, states: Vaccines given to the age group of between 9-15 year-old girls works best for the prevention of cervical cancer, as adolescents they produce higher levels of antibodies and for those not yet sexually active, the likelihood of HPV infection is very low, so prevention is therefore more effective.
 
However, even for women sexually active and with a family of their own, the HPV vaccine is still necessary!
 
Within China, HPV has two peak times in a women’s life where she is at risk. One is between 17-24yrs, the other is between 40-44yrs.
 
Clinical trials around the world have shown sexually active women between the ages of 26-45yrs can still benefit from the protection provided from the HPV vaccine. Not everyone who is sexually active has been infected with HPV, though taking preventive measures by getting inoculated with the HPV vaccine would be a wise choice.


05

 I’ve been infected with HPV, should I still get Vaccinated?



Yes. The are many strains of HPV out there, so even if you have been infected by one type, the HPV vaccine can still afford protection against other subtypes of HPV.


In global clinical trials, the vaccine has shown to still be very effective in adolescent women with transient HPV infection. This, too, goes for older generations with transient HPV infections. Therefore, the attitude both globally and in China towards the HPV vaccine is: “Vaccinate and Protect yourself as early as possible!”



06
 How to decide on an HPV Vaccine?



At present, the HPV vaccine is split into 2 valent, 4 valent and 9 valent, with “valence” being the number of subtypes, the larger the valent number, the wider the scope of protection. Existing HPV vaccines are mainly to protect against the high-risk strains of HPV that can lead to cervical cancer. Choice of vaccine can be made according to your age and needs.


07

 Is there No Risk of Infection after Vaccination?




No, there is still a risk. Even though the vaccine protects against the subtypes 16 and 18, which have been shown to be the main causes of cervical cancer, there are so many strains of HPV out there and some others that may still cause cervical cancer which the current vaccine does not protect against.


Moreover, although 99% of cervical cancer can be traced back to HPV infection, there is still that 1% that could be a result of a sexual disorder, premature sexual activity, multiple full-term pregnancies, bad menstrual hygiene and poor daily habits. As the HPV vaccine is not *** effective, getting vaccinated and following up with regular screenings is still important. We would recommend both a TCT and HPV screening to be performed:

A single TCT every 3yrs and a TCT and HPV test together every 5yrs.


The Main Reason for Vaccination is to Prevent Infection,

Screening is Key to Treat Early Infection.





On a final note: Globally, the HPV vaccine has been in use for the past 14yrs, but within China among women aged 9-45yrs, the inoculation rate in less than 0.05%. For your own health, Prevent as soon as Possible!