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Avatar universal

immunity , age and hpv

Hi doctor- I was at my doctors the other day for a check up. I have cleared my GW's and was talking about the chance of reoccurance now that they are gone. My doctor informed me that the younger you are when you contract the virus the greater the chance your GW's will not come back due to your immune system being stronger to combat the virus. I contracted the virus at age 28 and it took me about 11 months to get clear. Is there any truth to this? I have read on your post other than not getting HIV or cancer, there really is nothing anyone can do to "strengthen" their immunity. Am I not understanding this correctly? Also, I read on a ASHA pamphlet that once your GW's are gone for more than 6 months, it is more likely for your GW's not to come back. Is this standard? Lastly, once clear of GW's and one becomes pregnant does pregnancy increase the chance of reoccurance? Or is it the same, that once clear for a certain amount of time, it is unlikely for GW's to come back when a woman is pregnant? Thats all....once again, thank you for this website and for all you do....you have put me at ease more than once and I cannot thank you enough for that
10 Responses
239123 tn?1267651214
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
I am unaware of any data to support your doctor's advice; I do not believe age of acquiring HPV is likely to have much effect on the duration of infection.  However, it is possible your doctor knows of research that I have missed.  Anyway, 11 months is a bit longer than average but well within the normal range for HPV/wart clearance.

The other information you quote is pretty accurate.  ASHA's 6 month estimate is consistent with my own, as I have stated often on this forum.  Warts do indeed often recur in pregnant women.  And no reliable research has ever shown that nonspecific methods to "strengthen the immune system" make any difference.  Of course a balanced diet, exercise, adequate sleep, and stress reduction are good health habits, but there is no evidence they help the body handle HPV.

Good luck--  HHH, MD

Avatar universal
Dr, Sorry if Im not following you, but is it more likely for the GW's to come back when you are pregnant or does the 6 months without a reoccurance apply? I mean if you have not had a outbreak for 6+ months, does this make GW's less likely to reoccur when pregnant or does that not make a difference? Thanks again for your time...
Avatar universal
One last thing, do you think there will ever be a medicine or vaccine that can help? Or are there just too many different strains of this virus to identify for anyone to be able to make anything that can help? Thanks
239123 tn?1267651214
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
There is no research to answer your question with precision.  Warts sometimes appear in pregnant women many years after an earlier infection.  But it's not inevitable, and most pregnant women with past warts don't have recurrences.

I am not optimistic about a future medication or vaccine to speed resolution of established HPV infection.  But in a year or so highly effective vaccines will appear on the market, which will prevent acqusition of the most common HPV types (6 and 11, the main wart-causing types; and 16 & 18, which together are responsible for something like 70% of cervical cancers).

HHH, MD
Avatar universal
i mean to say i hear that most women have hpv but they never know they have it cuz it never shows up and their pap test are normal. Since it showed up in my gf with the testing what does this mean for her since her pap test was abnormal. does this mean she will show symptoms of hpv> she is 27 years old. Is it possible for hpv to go away without showing symptoms and for her pap tests to be normal again. what does the symtpoms depend on? your immune system?

hope this helps, any advice on this issue would help alot!!
239123 tn?1267651214
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Do some reading about HPV.  All those questions have been addressed repeatedly on this forum and it would take 15 min of writing to fully answer them again.  Most HPV infections and the abnormal cells they cause are cleared by the immune system.

HHH, MD
Avatar universal
Doctor since they say 75% of people have hpv but they dont know it their whole life cause it never shows symptoms, since my girl got diagnosed with hpv does this mean she is not part of that percentage and the risk of showing symptoms are increased? does having an abnormal pap test due to hpv mean you have abnormal cells? Since the doc said the hpv was really hard to detect in her but its there what does this mean? is this in the early stages? or can it be going away?

thanks for all your help.
239123 tn?1267651214
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
It's not true that 75% of the population has HPV.  About 75% get it, but most infections go away.  Among sexually active younger people (age 20-25), 10-20% may be infected at any one time.

Otherwise, I don't understand your question and can't answer specifically about what your GF does and doesn't have.  She should discuss it directly with her doctor and follow his/her advice.

HHH, MD
Avatar universal
since the pap test came back abnormal and found that she have hpv does this mean she has the hpv that causes abnormal cell changes or warts, can the wart type of hpv cause the pap test to come back abnormal as well? is there a way you can tell the difference?

i know most people that find out that have hpv dont get warts,abnormal cells, etc. what does this depend on? your body?

I have a problem with molluscum in my groin area. its been like 2 1/2 months and i still have the MC. im nervous about freezing them or using aldara so im waiting them out, but im noticing little onces pop up that werent there before, what does this mean? ive had like 5 of them that got inflammed then went away, now i have like 3-4 left, and nocited new little ones. since the other ones went away does this mean my body is helping fight this infection and eventually will become immune to it?

When is MC contagious, when they have the white core in the middle? can the lesion be contagious if there is no visible white core?

thanks for all your help doc, appreciate it.
Avatar universal
There is so much conflicting information on the internet regarding HPV, I would please like some clarification. I was diagnosed with the HPV virus, and it has caused by cervix to produce abnormal cells; specifically low grade squamous cells. Additionally, I have occassionally yeast - like infections that are moderately painful and itichy. During these yeast - like infections, which have occurred maybe monthly for the past year; there is an orange-red discharge ONLY noticable when I wipe, with a few particles of some kind of tissue. I am going in for a colpscopy, and pending those results I will know what to do next. My question is this; based upon my specific symptoms, what are the odds that MY HPV will be cleared by my immune system?

Thank you for your time.
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