Papillomavirus infection: what is it?

The human papillomavirus is very widespread. Seventy out of a hundred people are carriers of the infection, as a result of which neoplasms appear on the skin and mucous membranes. Often the virus affects intimate areas. While the body successfully copes thanks to a strong immune system, many do not even suspect the presence of an infection. However, with a weakened state of the body, papillomavirus infection passes from a latent state to an active one. Some strains contribute to the development of cancer. Therefore, at the slightest suspicion of papillomavirus, you need to see a doctor. A neglected infection requires the use of destructive methods and serious medical treatment.

What is HPV?

If antibodies to HPV are found in the blood, the doctor will explain what it is. The abbreviation stands for human papillomavirus, another name is human papillomavirus infection. The English name is Human papillomavirus, abbreviated as HPV.

This is an infectious disease transmitted by contact. Human papillomaviruses are divided into 27 species and more than 120 strains (or types), among which there are strains of high, medium, low risk of oncogenicity and non-oncogenic types.

What does HPV look like? A person develops skin neoplasms: warts, papillomas, condylomas. This is due to the fact that the DNA of the virus is integrated into the DNA of the damaged cell, changing its functions. The division process accelerates, growths characteristic of infection are formed, supplied with blood vessels.

The nature and localization of growths depend on the type of virus that has entered the body and the sites of damage. Benign neoplasms appear anywhere: in the mouth, nasopharynx, face, neck, armpits, internal and external organs of the genitourinary system. It is possible to become infected even when shaking hands with a carrier of the infection, especially if there is damage to the skin.

When infected after sexual contact, the patient may not visually detect neoplasms, however, itching, burning and discomfort in the area of \u200b\u200bthe internal genital organs or rectum, mucous or spotting are also observed. Such symptoms are typical when papillomas appear on the surface of internal organs.

Where does the human papillomavirus come from?

HPV infection is primarily sexually transmitted, so those who frequently change sexual partners are more likely to become infected. But even with loyalty to one person, if he is a carrier of HPV, there will be constant interinfection.

There are other reasons for the appearance of the papillomavirus. The infection is also transmitted through the household route. Viral agents can stay for a long time on wet surfaces in public places, such as swimming pools, saunas, bathrooms, from where they get to the epithelium. And in the presence of microtraumas, they are able to penetrate into the basal layers of the skin.

This viral disease is transmitted to the baby during childbirth from an HPV-infected mother. The possibility of self-infection during shaving and epilation is not excluded.

Virus activation factors

Papillomavirus infection manifests itself in the form of growths in more than 3/5 of the adult population. Observations show that up to 80% of them recover without treatment within a year.

However, for some reason, the human papillomavirus remains in the body and becomes active. The main reason is the weakening of the immune system, because of which the body is not able to fight back the virus.

Factors that reduce immune forces include:

  • bad habits (alcohol, nicotine, drugs);
  • exhaustion as a result of overwork, stress, malnutrition;
  • long-term use of certain medications;
  • hormonal changes, including during pregnancy.

What is dangerous papillomavirus

At the beginning of the development of the disease, many do not take proper measures, not realizing the seriousness of the situation, justify themselves by the lack of time and postpone the visit to the doctor "for later". Consequences are coming. The virus continues to infect cells, the growths increase in size, capture a large area of the skin, in some cases it degenerates into oncology. A person begins to be treated when health problems become apparent, but by that time the situation is already very neglected. And all this time he is contagious.

How dangerous is the human papillomavirus, statistics show. In medical practice, cervical cancer in the absence of HPV does not occur. In most cases, viruses of the 16th and 18th type are responsible for the development of oncology. But not all HPV strains produce consequences in the form of malignant tumors.

Often, infection with other sexually transmitted diseases occurs simultaneously with HPV.

cancer risk

Papillomavirus infection is not a death sentence. There are non-oncogenic and oncogenic types of human papillomavirus. There are groups of high (HPV 16, 18, 31, 33, 39, 50, 59, 64, 68, 70), medium (HPV 30, 35, 45, 52, 53, 56, 58) and low (HPV 3, 6, 11, 13, 32, 34, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 51, 61, 72, 73) cancer risk. Moreover, among strains of high oncogenicity, it is HPV-16 that causes cervical cancer in 50% of cases. Therefore, if the disease is detected, first of all, examinations are carried out to determine the strain of the virus.

Impact on pregnancy

Women in a position who have been diagnosed with papillomavirus infection are concerned about the question of whether HPV is dangerous for a child. The virus is not able to penetrate the amniotic fluid and the placenta, so it does not pose any danger to the development of the fetus.

However, during childbirth, the presence of papillomas in the birth canal will cause certain complications:

  • Injury to the growths can lead to severe bleeding and re-infection of the mother's body.
  • By direct contact with papillomas, a child becomes infected, which will subsequently lead to growths in the baby in the mouth, larynx, or in the vulva.

Therefore, as a precautionary measure, couples planning a pregnancy are advised to get tested for HPV.

Symptoms of papillomavirus and types of rashes

The appearance of warts, papillomas or condylomas on the skin and mucous membranes are external signs of the human papillomavirus.

A wart is a hard, dry skin growth that looks like a nodule the size of a pinhead or more. Most often located in the area of \u200b\u200bthe palms and soles. The so-called plantar warts appear in places where shoes rub the skin, especially with excessive sweating. Not all cases are associated with HPV infection.

Papillomas (from the Latin papillo - "nipple") are benign tumors on the skin in the form of a papilla. Formed on the skin and mucous membranes of the mouth, nasopharynx, bladder. This is a soft formation on the leg. The color varies from white to brown, but usually the papilloma has the color of the surrounding tissues. The growth is single, sometimes a whole "colony" grows, similar to a rooster's comb or cauliflower.

Condylomas are a type of papillomas, subdivided into flat and genital warts, observed mainly on the genitals, around the anus, on the oral mucosa. Moreover, in women, the virus usually manifests itself on the reproductive organs, but anal condylomatosis often develops in men. The appearance of papillomas or warts are clear signs of papillomavirus.

doctor recommends a cure for papillomavirus

Symptoms of the human papillomavirus are associated with the appearance of neoplasms and appear within two to three months after infection. If you find them, we recommend that you immediately consult a doctor.

Flat papillomas usually occur during adolescence. They do not differ in color from the skin, form small groups.

In the case of the formation of growths on the surface of the internal organs, there are unpleasant sensations of a foreign body, burning and itching, discharge of blood or ichor.

Diagnostic methods

When warts, papillomas or condylomas appear, first of all, you should consult a doctor for a clinical examination. Depending on the location of the growths, it will be a dermatologist, gynecologist, urologist or proctologist. If the presence of the human papillomavirus is confirmed, an immunologist will take part in the treatment process.

Women with cervical (on the cervix) neoplasms must undergo a colposcopy and biopsy to determine the presence of HPV infection. During colposcopy, a test is performed using clinical markers - acetic acid or Lugol's solution. Uneven absorption of the solution by the epithelium helps to recognize the human papillomavirus.

Smears are taken for cytological examination, through which it is possible to detect atypical cells - reborn under the influence of the virus, and histological examination. At the same time, a Digene test for oncogenicity is done.

An important role in the diagnosis of HPV is played by the PCR method (polymerase chain reaction), thanks to which the type of virus can be identified.

A blood test is required to detect other sexually transmitted infections.

How to treat human papillomavirus infection

How to cure the human papillomavirus in the active stage and, moreover, is it possible to cure the papillomavirus completely? Today, no means have yet been developed that guarantee absolute deliverance from human papillomavirus infection.

The question arises whether it is necessary to treat HPV and whether it makes sense. Yes, it is necessary. If the human papillomavirus is not treated, it will infect other cells, contributing to the growth of neoplasms. Here is an example of an HPV treatment regimen:

  • unwanted growths are removed;
  • antiviral drugs, drugs that strengthen the immune system, vitamin and mineral complexes are prescribed.


Treatment of papillomavirus infection begins with the elimination of the cause of the disease. First of all, a drug is prescribed that does not kill the microbe and does not allow the further spread of human papillomavirus throughout the body.

human papillomavirus pills

Treatment is prescribed by a doctor after determining the strain of the virus, taking into account the age and specifics of the patient's body.

The most effective treatment for human papillomavirus is carried out with isoprinosine preparations, which block the synthesis of viral DNA.


Treatment of papillomavirus infection with the help of immunomodulators is to strengthen the immune system, since the body's resistance to viruses depends on it. An immunogram helps to prescribe the correct drug treatment, thanks to which the immune status is determined, after which the appropriate drug is selected.

To get rid of the human papillomavirus, interferons, proteins that cells secrete in response to the attack of the virus, must enter the battlefield. If the body cannot produce them in the right amount, interferon preparations or interferon inducers are prescribed - substances that stimulate the production of their own interferons.

There are drugs that have both antiviral and immunomodulatory effects.

Destructive Methods

Treatment of papillomavirus with external manifestations must be treated with destructive methods, that is, the papilloma must be removed, since it is the focus of a viral infection. There are various methods for this:

  • the laser is used to evaporate shallow growths, leaving virtually no traces;
  • the cryodestruction method is used to freeze papillomas;
  • the electric knife burns out the neoplasm;
  • surgery is performed in case of severe overgrowth or suspected cancer.

However, the treatment of the papillomavirus does not end there. To fight infection, an integrated pharmacological approach is needed.

Application of local funds

How is the human papillomavirus treated using local remedies? Although this approach has not proven to be highly effective, because in this way it is impossible to remove the human papillomavirus from the body, papillomas are still treated with cauterizing and mummifying drugs.

For topical use, ointments, gels, sprays and suppositories of antiviral and anti-inflammatory action are used. The best option will help you choose the attending physician.

How effective is the treatment

Is it possible to cure HPV forever and in general is HPV treated or not? So far, no tool has been developed to help get rid of papillomavirus forever. The essence of the treatment is to stop the development of pathology, to save a person from neoplasms that interfere with normal life, and to prevent the occurrence of relapses as much as possible, since the papilloma virus remains in the body.

Experts say that in some cases, patients managed to defeat the infection completely. This result is influenced by many individual factors, including the general condition of the body.

Prevention of papillomavirus infection

Protecting yourself from HPV infection is the personal responsibility of each person.

First of all, it is important to have one sexual partner. Using a condom when in contact with a carrier of the virus is often not enough. Studies have proven the relationship between frequent partner changes, HPV disease and the development of cervical cancer in women. If an infection is detected, both sexual partners should be examined and treated to avoid re-infection.

A conscious healthy lifestyle will contribute to the overall strengthening of the body, which will help to cope with the virus.


Papillomavirus infection, the ease of its transmission and spread, the high risk of oncogenicity - all this seriously worries doctors. In 2006, a human papillomavirus vaccine was developed in America. The vaccine is registered in many countries around the world.

Vaccination protects against HPV 6, 11, 16, 18 - the most oncogenic strains. The course includes three vaccinations. The second is done in two months. Four months later, a third.

A number of studies have shown that the vaccine is almost 100% effective if the person was not infected with the virus before vaccination. Immunization is carried out among adolescents 10-12 years old. Vaccination against HPV is a method of prevention, so it is done before the onset of sexual activity. Once infected, it is ineffective. Vaccinate also adults, but not infected with HPV.