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HPV Testing woman
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The STD Forum is intended only for questions and support pertaining to sexually transmitted diseases other than HIV/AIDS, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus, genital warts, trichomonas, other vaginal infections, nongonoccal urethritis (NGU), cervicitis, molluscum contagiosum, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). All questions will be answered by H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D. or Edward W Hook, MD.

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HPV Testing woman

My wife has had numerous Pap and the accompaning HPV for a number of years with nothing abnormal showing up. We have been married for 16 years. I have been in a relationship with another woman who might have HPV this year, but that is over. I don't want to lose my wife if an upcoming test shows HPV.

I know that HPV can lie dormant for many years and not be diagnosed, but if dormant will it show up on a the HPV test anyway? Is it possible that the HPV will not show up on current tests but show up in the future possibly? Is there a connection between herpes and HPV?

I need to know the plausability of saying that it has been in her system from before we were married. Hate to do it but want to save the marriage if it comes to this.
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You have no worries.  Most abnormal pap smears in women age 30 and over are believed to result from chronic HPV infection that shows up after a long silent period. In other words, if your wife develops an abnormal pap smear someday, it will not necessarily have any implicaitons that you infected her recently.

That said, since you have had another sexual partnership (with or without known HPV infection), it is certainly possible that you could be infected with HPV and might have trasnsmitted it to your wife.  If she develops an abnormal pap, undoubtedly both she and her gynecologist will raise the possibility that she was infected recently.  In other words, in that event, you can expect to get into discussions about it.  But thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of women every year get abnormal paps caused by distant past HPV infections.

There is no connection between gential (genital) HPV and genital herpes except that both are sexually transmitted.

I hope this helps.  HHH, MD
6 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
I believe that my wife has a pap and the HPV test every year regardless. If she does not have HPV, then it won't show up, but if she has it and it is dormant will it show up on an HPV test or only if it is active will it show up?

Thanx.
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239123_tn?1267651214
I'm not sure what you are asking or what you don't understand.  I knew that your wife has had negative paps and HPV tests over the years and took that information into account in my reply above.  The HPV test is positive only when the infection is active. HPV tests can be negative for years then turn positive when an old infection reactivates.
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Avatar_f_tn
whoa!u have no worries?it is truly sad that both of u would propose to a woman  whose had clean paps and no hpv for 16 years that if she gets HPV in light of the addition of another partner outside the marriage that the wife's infection could have been dormant!Getting HPV and having to go thru colposcopy's paps and a possible LEEP is no small worry to a woman even if it is a common infection in this age today.
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239123_tn?1267651214
It is true that getting cervical HPV can be a big deal.  But it's also true that the large majority of HPV infections in women don't cause abnormal paps; most of those don't need loop excision (LEEP); and eeven fewer infections actually lead to cancer, even without treatment.

In this forum, we generally stay away from the ethical and moral issues raised by the questions.  There is too much difference of opinion and one size rarely fits all situations.  Also, the forum doesn't want to take positions that might inhibit questioners from frankly describing their situations, which could affect the moderator's judgment and advice.  The ethics of Involve2much's sexual behavior and its implications for his wife's health are his business, not topics for discussion in this forum.  Feel free to carry on such discussions on the STD community forum.
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Avatar_f_tn
i appreciate your time in responding to this.I got high risk HPV after 10 years of celibacy and was told that the dormancy theory was highly unlikely due to my vigilance with paps..hence was re-introduced to a new HPV strain.I had the LEEP and post -op was a long healing process.All of us here appreciate your experience,educational info and time.I urge many if not all in the HPV community to read daily yours and Dr.Hooks responses to ppl.....and yes i realize this thread is closed!:)
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H. Hunter Handsfield, M.D.Blank
University of Washington
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