HP viruses cause cervical cancer, among other things. The vaccination must be given before the first sexual intercourse . It doesn’t protect against all types of HPV.
Human papillomavirus (HPV)
The virus is transmitted through skin, especially mucosal contact, during sex.
Course of disease
The HP viruses are responsible for cervical cancer, among other things. It is one of the most common malignant tumor types. In Germany about 15 out of 100,000 women develop it every year. But far more people become infected: around 70 percent of all sexually active men and women are infected with the human papillomavirus at least once in their life.
The immune system usually defends itself successfully against the infection – this takes about six to 18 months. After that, there is no lifelong immunity – reinfection with the same type is possible. The virus does not cause any symptoms in the early stages. Advanced symptoms include yellowish-brownish discharge, bleeding that occurs regardless of your period or after intercourse, and abdominal pain.
Those affected do not overcome about ten percent of HPV infections; they are chronic. Chronic infections over twelve to 24 months pose a very high risk for the development of precancerous stages in the cervix.
Treatment depends on the stage of the disease. In mild cases, the cancer regresses on its own. In severe cases it has to be surgically removed. A tissue sample is also taken. Depending on how far the infection has progressed, the uterus may need to be removed.
Girls between the ages of twelve and 19 can be vaccinated.
One out of ten patients reacts with a fever as well as reddening of the skin and painful swelling around the injection site. Headache, joint pain, abdominal pain, vomiting and nausea can also occur after the vaccination. The symptoms usually subside quickly.
Clinical studies rarely (that is, affects less than 1 in 1,000 people) report hives , an itchy rash.