HPV Over 40 And Still Counting

That’s the number of different types of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) that are known to exist. Obviously, for whatever reason, nobody yet knows specifically the exact number…and maybe this is about to change thanks to Michael Douglas. If you haven’t read, heard, or seen the headlines recently he stated that his throat cancer was caused by HPV and not his drinking and smoking. Since then however he has retracted that statement (troubles with the wife maybe?) Who knows? It doesn’t really matter anymore – it’s out there and I say: Thank goodness!

Why? Well, for starters like I mentioned above – no one really knows how many different types of the virus are actually out there. Secondly, at this point in time there is not a particular test for both men and women that can be done to find out if you have it or not (the only test available is for girls/woman and that is a pap smear – and this is taken directly from the CDC website about HPV:  Although there is no routine screening test for other HPV-associated diseases, you should visit your doctor regularly for checkups.

Third, it can cause cancer…and the medical community has known about it for quite some time now (that’s kind-of scary). Fourth and lastly, there is no treatment once you have it (I mean, at least with Herpes you are just dealing with cold sores/fever blisters).

So yes, right or wrong, I’m glad to see Mr. Oliver Rose himself standing up once again to declare war…and in this case causing media awareness about this virus again (any young person reading this just Google that movie character to get the war reference). Then, while you’re at it, you can also Google HPV vaccination and then go get it done (if you are 18-26 years old and haven’t had sex yet…otherwise, just ask your parents) and for you parents reading this…go get your child/children (between the ages of 11 thru 17) vaccinated.

There is absolutely no reason NOT to do it. If you are worried that it’s going to promote sexually activity, then don’t tell them it’s about sex – tell them it’s so they won’t get cancer…it’s that simple. Later in life they can come back and yell at you for telling them a little white lie but then also thank you at the same time for protecting them against these nasty little viruses AND possible cancer from them.

In the meantime, I really hope all of this stir causes at least some more money to be allocated for more research to come up with a simple screening test for both sexes…and to find a treatment for HPV.