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HPV Concerns

Married male, mid-30s, 2 kids. Wife low 40s. 10+ years monogamous. On 6-1, I regretfully received protected oral & brief vaginal from CSW. Brief bare hand to penis arousal.

I’ve spent hours reading hundreds of posts on MedHelp & other sites prior to posting. Like most others on these boards, I’ve been consumed with guilt & anxiety riddled ever since. Fears: I may have given high strain, cancer causing HPV wife & of course, tearing my family apart.

Multiple full male STD panel tests, All (-).

Concern: HPV. I’ve had HPV warts a long time ago. Was wart free for years until this stupid act on 6-1. Around 6-15, appx 5 warts popped up on scrotum. I had them burnt off & one cut off within a few days. Lab tests came confirm (+) for HPV wart surgically removed.  

Wife tested (+) for low strain HPV in 2010. No warts, No procedures had to be done. Wife healthy, doesn’t smoke, occasionally socially drinks, good immune system.

1. I know I got low-strain HPV again because I got warts. What is the probability I picked up high strain HPV also?
2. Wife & I had unprotected sex on 6-2. She goes to gynecologist on 6-5. Everything normal. If I contracted new HPV infection from 6-1 & we had sex on 6-2, would anything have popped up on her 6-5 exam or is that not enough time?
3. I’ve read that if HPV pops up a 2nd time, it’s NOT likely “latent HPV” and it’s usually a new strain so suspect infidelity. Correct?
4. I’ve read HPV clears within 6-24 months. But some sites say “from the moment you test positive…” So, in theory, you could be infected a while before you test positive – correct?
5. Worst case scenario, I have infected wife with new HPV. Since it will be one year until her next exam, likelihood of it clearing?

Psychologically speaking, I know I’ve got major issues to have done this. I’m seeking counseling. I’m trying to sort out what I’m going to do. I’m beyond ashamed & disgusted with myself for my actions!

Please help! Thanks!
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239123 tn?1267651214
Welcome to the forum.  As it happens, in a question I answered yesterday, I provided a blog-like response that was intended to cover most if not all questions about sexually transmitted HPV infection -- either in the response itself or in several other threads whose links I provided.  Therefore my responses below are succinct; see the other threads for more detail.


Your June 1 extramarital sexual exposure carried no measurable risk of a new HPV infection, given that your exposure was condom protected, both vaginal and oral.  The reappearance of warts on your scrotum had nothing to do with that event.

To the specific questions:

1) As noted above, there is little chance you acquired a new HPV infection of any type on 6/1.

2) New warts or other HPV lesions do not show up sooner than 6-8 weeks after exposure, and the average is 6-12 months.

3) Most new warts or abnormal paps are from new and not reactivation of old infection -- but your new scrotum warts probably are reactivation of your past infection.

4,5) Newly infected people are potentially infectious for partners before overt warts appear, but probably not within a few days.  Even if you really acquired HPV 5 days earlier -- which, as noted above, you almost certainly did not -- your wife would not yet be at risk.

I hope this helps.  Please take a look at those parts of the other threads that are pertinent to your situation.

Regards--  HHH, MD
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Avatar universal
Dr. HHH,

Thank you for your reply. I looked at the links & your reply in detail. I know the stats are on my side, but I still worry because in years prior, none of my warts were on my scrotum. They were always at the base of penis, near where shaft meets body. That is why I'm worried 6/1 incident is the cause of new warts on 6-15.

1.) I see from one of your posts there are "tests for men in research" for HPV. Where? Any specifics on this? I've goggled with no luck. I know you don't recommend it, but my situation is different. 10+ years monogamous. HPV+ already on file with wife (no lesions). Gyno has said testing + again, suspect infidelity, but not first time... as you confirmed above. Potential implications are disastrous.

2.) Most of us up here are "helicopters" over genitals after incidents like this... hence we notice stuff sooner... Is it possible the avg. wart / lesion appearance is quoted 6+ weeks to 12 months because that's when most folks notice it - that aren't anxiety riddled like us up here? As it could really be there sooner, but most are ignorant on this std (HPV, that is)?

3.) Yes, I'm here to seek reassurance, but please, if you would ans my worse case scenario - If I have infected wife with new HPV. Since it will be one year until her next exam, likelihood of it clearing? Remember - wife: no hpv vaccine, no smoking, healthy, good immune sys., very light drinker, but age: low 40's.

4.) What causes lesions to appear on women's cervix? Only high strain HPV, only low strain, both?

5.) Any studies, numbers, stats on what part of males genitals infected women with HPV? More concentrated in testicles vs shaft, vs other area? In other words "couple has protected sex, thus woman got hpv from male's testicles..." or is this just an impossible question to answer?

Thank you for all of your insight!

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239123 tn?1267651214
1) Even if I knew where you could find an HPV test, I would recommend against using it.  Assuming your scrotal lesions have been professionally confirmed as warts, you know for sure an HPV test would be positive; even if negative, the test result would not be believable.

2) "Is it possible the avg. wart / lesion appearance is quoted 6+ weeks to 12 months because that's when most folks notice it?"  No, not possible.  The range I gave comes from people in research studies who were being examined by experts at monthly intervals.  If anything, the true time until patients would notice warts may be even longer.  Trust me on this:  there is simply no chance in the world that your new warts were acquired only 2 weeks before the showed up.

3) I already said that sex a 5 days after exposure is too soon to transmit the virus.

4) Both high and low risk HPV types regularly infect the cervix.

5) It is presumed that most HPV transmitted to women comes from male penile infection.  Whenver warts appear anywhere in the genital area, the places actually infected are more widespread.  Think of visible warts as the tip of the iceberg.  You can assume that you have HPV involving genital tissues other than the skin of your scrotum.

Of course all this assume you indeed have warts of the scrotum.  If you're going by self-diagnosis, I would strongly encourage you to see a health proessional to confirm the diagnosis.  Maybe you have something else entirely.

Nobody should lose sleep over genital warts or other HPV infections, nor allow them to interfere with romance and rewarding sex.  Life is too short to let such a trivial problem have such an impact.

That will end this thread.  Good luck.
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