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Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Community
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Avatar universal

Safe to Have sex Now/HPV

Hello,

I got diagnosed with HPV/Genital Warts a little over a year ago. Last December I got the warts removed by laser. I thought I saw two new ones pop up so I used the generic Aldara brand to get rid of them. Thankfully it looks like it did the job. I've inspected my penile area and can't see any signs of warts. It's been two months since I have applied the cream.

Is it ok to start having sex again? I currently live in South Korea, so I had my relatives ship over two more prescriptions of Aldara. I was thinking about reapplying it just to be safe. I've read that if the warts are gone for a substantial period of time then it's ok to assume that your immune system has cleared it. I still am a little bit hesitant though.

6 Responses
1306047 tn?1333247191
Two months may be a little premature to assume you are clear of the virus but it is a hopeful development.  The general rule of thumb is three to six months and I erred on the six month side myself.  

If your partner is aware of you recent infection and the status of it, then it is their decision whether or not to have sex with you.  If you are careful with your foreplay to avoid direct rubbing and you wear a condom you should be alright.  After six months, it is my feeling and that of the doctors that you do  not need to inform partners of your past with HPV.  It'd be like telling them you once had the chicken pox or something.  

Hope this helps.  
Avatar universal
Thanks for the reply. How would you reconcile the possibility of never fully knowing if you transmit or not to future partners? All current scientific tests say that the virus can’t be detected below a certain level which probably indicates that the body is rid of it.

There is a part of me that just says don’t worry about it. But I don't want to feel guilty every time after sex because of a "what if" in my head.
Avatar universal
Also, I found this comment on wikipeida regarding clearence. Granted this is wikipedia and the study was conducted in 2006.

"raditional theories postulated that the virus remained in the body for a lifetime. However, new studies using sensitive DNA techniques have shown that through immunological response the virus can either be cleared or suppressed to levels below what polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests can measure. One study testing genital skin for subclinical HPV using PCR found a prevalence of 10%.[19]"

About the 10% bit, is that a level below being undectable? Or is this just one specific study referring to one person. Who knows with wikipedia these days.
1306047 tn?1333247191
Look, if you transmitted to future partners after you clear the virus, then at the very least anecdotal evidence would be out there that you can do so.  There is no evidence out there.   You will find a few outliers but statistically speaking the chance is near zero.  With a virus like HPV you can never say never, but choosing to worry about something that isn't gonna happen unless you are that super rare outlier is pointless.   Not only that, it's really just HPV warts here were talking about.  It's not cervical cancer kind, there are no lasting negative consquences other than stigma.  Warts are a cosmetic blemish that has been horribly stigmatized and we all feel like crap mentally and morally when we get it.  I was like that.  NOw my research over the last three years has taught me the truth.  

For you, having only gone two months, I would still either avoid sex or talk about it with your partner.  If you are armed with the facts and the assessment of reasonable risk, only the hysterical wouldn't at least listen to you.  If you don't have any more outbreaks by July, then I wouldn't even bother mentioning it nor feeling any guilt for doing so.  Those tests are just a few ttests done on a few people.  Millions of us are out there having sex.  Be careful, don't worry.
1808540 tn?1320118460
If you going to have sex, be open about it to your partner. Also it is unknown is the virus is clear or suppressed, and unclear if the virus pops up again later on in life. You need to wear a condom.
1306047 tn?1333247191
I myself do not feel the need to inform partners nor wear a condom after my infection has cleared and it's been more than six months. Each consecutive month that goes by after that serves to reinforce my stance.  Granted, I'm not out there banging new partners all the time, and if I was I'd wear protection every time just so I wouldn't freak out about a new infection.  But after all the research I've done and all the posts I've read over the last three years, I'm not at all worried about a recurrence of my past infection.  
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