Human papillomavirus is an oncogenic disease. The main manifestations of HPV are the formation of warts, papillomas and condylomas on the skin and mucous membranes. Both women and men are affected by the virus.
Causes of the emergence and activation of HPV
Note! The main reason for the appearance of papillomavirus in the body is infection from an infected person.
Factors that provoke the infection include:
- weakened immunity;
- bad habits;
- frequent and severe nerve shocks;
- viral infection;
- pathology of the gastrointestinal tract;
- frequent change of sexual partners, unprotected sexual intercourse.
Can human papillomavirus be treated?
HPV in the active stage of development is treatable.
The main goal of treatment is to eliminate symptoms and strengthen the protective mechanism of the human body.
Depending on the type of virus, symptoms and complications, different treatments can be used.
Can HPV be cured permanently?
A feature of HPV is that when it enters the body, it settles there forever. During the periods when the body has a strong defense mechanism and is not exposed to the aforementioned risk factors, the virus is in a calm state and is not activated.
With a decrease in the immune system, non-compliance with hygiene rules, deterioration of health, the papillomavirus can reactivate.
Methods of papillomavirus infection
HPV virus infection occurs through direct contact with an infected person, through the mucous membranes and skin. There are several routes of infection:
- The main way is sexual contact. The probability of papillomavirus transmission from an infected partner during unprotected intercourse is 60-70%. The risk increases significantly with frequent partner changes. In the presence of microtrauma on the mucous membranes, infection is also possible during a kiss or oral intercourse;
- HPV infection also occurs in the home: when using the same towels, dishes, and hygiene products with an infected person. There is a risk of contracting the papillomavirus in public saunas, baths and swimming pools;
- Vertical transmission of the virus is also possible - from mother to fetus during childbirth.
Why is the human papillomavirus dangerous?
All varieties of HPV can be conditionally divided into two categories: viruses with low and high oncogenic risk. Groups of the second category are capable of turning into an oncological disease.
Note! HPV poses the greatest risk to women - highly oncogenic strains of the virus are the most predisposed to them.
In women, papillomavirus can cause a number of diseases associated with the reproductive system:
- pathology of the cervix: erosion, leukoplakia, adenocarcinoma, cancerous tumors;
- oncology of the external genitalia, anal area.
Also, the development of the disease is accompanied by the appearance of warts and papillomas on the genitals, limbs, armpits and neck. Neoplasms cause discomfort, interfere with hygiene and the conduct of a habitual lifestyle, therefore they must be disposed of.
In men, the risk of developing cancer with HPV is lower, but not excluded. In addition, acute-angled papillomas can form on the penis, which cause discomfort and interfere with normal sexual activity. Such neoplasms should be removed immediately.
Identification of the disease usually begins with a visual examination by a doctor. During the examination, mucous membranes, skin integuments are studied, with special attention it is necessary to examine the areas where warts and papillomas are most often formed: the genital area, armpits, neck.
The main methods of diagnosing HPV include the following:
- Women absolutely must undergo colposcopy, examination of the cervix and vagina, and also pass tests for cytology (scraping from the mucous membranes). If oncology is suspected, a biopsy may also be ordered;
- PCR analysis (polymerase chain reaction). Allows you to identify virus DNA from any material provided for analysis;
- The Digene test is a more accurate analysis. According to his results, the papillomavirus can be detected, its type can be recognized by DNA, and the degree of malignancy can be determined.
General treatment regimen for HPV
There are currently no unified international protocols for the treatment of human papillomavirus. Two-component treatment regimens have proved to be the best: they combine the removal of viral lesions with surgical methods and the simultaneous passage of special antiviral therapy. The effectiveness of this approach to treating HPV is up to 90%.
Features of treatment in children
When HPV is activated in a child, doctors first of all resort to conservative therapeutic methods: the appointment of immunomodulators and vitamins, as well as local treatment of rashes with ointments, compresses.
Surgery is usually resorted to only in cases where, during observation, the growth of warts and papillomas is noted.
Features of treatment during pregnancy
Note! HPV during the period of pregnancy does not have a pronounced negative effect on its development and the course of pregnancy in general.
The main recommendations for the treatment of papillomavirus during pregnancy:
- If the virus is detected before pregnancy, you should be treated without delay. This will normalize immunity and avoid thrush and other infections;
- It is desirable to plan for the onset of pregnancy at the end of the second cycle after the completion of treatment;
- The course of treatment for HPV during pregnancy should begin no earlier than the 28th week of pregnancy, the period when all organs are formed in the baby. This will help to avoid the negative effects of medicines on the baby's body.
The main treatments for HPV are:
- taking specific antiviral drugs;
- a course of immunomodulators;
- surgical removal of neoplasms (papillomas, warts);
- reducing the symptoms of the disease through traditional medicine.
Important! The choice of drugs depends on the type of virus and the characteristics of the body. Only a doctor can prescribe a course of therapy and dosage of drugs, self-medication can aggravate the situation.
The appointment of immunomodulators should be carried out by a doctor based on the patient's immunogram - this will allow to obtain a faster and more stable result.
Surgical approach (growth removal)
The main goal of HPV surgery is to remove the cells that have been modified by the virus from the body.
Removal can be done in several ways, depending on the characteristics of the disease and the doctor's indications:
- Electrocoagulation. Depending on the HPV group, the effectiveness of the treatment varies from 80% to 95%;
- Removal of rashes with laser. High efficiency, but there is a high probability of relapse. In addition, the wounds after the procedure heal for a long time - up to 4 weeks;
- radio wave surgery. It is used to remove single formations;
- cryotherapy. Efficiency: up to 65%, relapse occurs in 40-50% of cases;
- Chemo-destructive agents. Applicable only for skin rashes in the genital area. Relatively low efficiency - no more than 40%.
Note! Means of alternative medicine should not be considered a comprehensive method of treating HPV. However, they are a convenient and harmless way to weaken the active manifestation of the virus.
The most effective for papillomavirus are such folk remedies: fresh potato juice, well-prepared twine, a mixture of garlic and vinegar, Kalanchoe leaves, tea tree oil.
They should be used in the form of compresses, dressings for external manifestations of HPV - papillomas, warts.
Prevention of HPV recurrence
The main goals of preventing the recurrence of warts and papillomas are to strengthen immunity and maintain hygiene at home and in public places. Recommended:
- adhere to the correct diet;
- undergo vitamin therapy;
- observe a normal way of working, get enough sleep and completely relax;
- increase physical activity.
Important! Vaccination is an effective method of preventing HPV reactivation: it can be used to protect against the most dangerous groups of the virus for a long time.