HPV can be spread from person to person. One of the most common ways in which it is spread is through sex; vaginal, anal, or oral sex with an infected partner can result in infection. Research shows that as many as three out of every four people who have sex will get a genital HPV infection at some time in their lives.
The HPV infection has been linked to cancers of the cervix, vagina, vulva, anus and penis. Genital warts, however, are not linked to cancer.
The most commonly used test is called a Pap Smear or a Pap test. Your healthcare provider will be able to perform this simple test for you. It involves collecting a sample of the cells that have been naturally shed from the cervix, and examining them under a microscope in the laboratory.
Most abnormal Pap smear tests are actually the result of mildly abnormal changes in the lining of the cervix or vagina. Your healthcare provider will recommend follow-up in the form of a repeat Pap smear or Colposcopy.
There is no cure for HPV, but it can certainly be prevented.
HPV infection is very common.