Emotional Toll of Genital and Anal Warts

 
How do I cope with the emotional toll of Genital Warts and HPV? Who can help me?
 
The emotional toll of discovering you have genital warts is perhaps even more difficult than seeking treatment. It is natural to feel that you have done something wrong or to want to blame your partner for contracting the virus.  This adds emotional strain to any relationship.
 
It’s also difficult to deal with having unsightly growths on your genitals and/or anal area.
 
At this point, the most important thing that you can do is become as knowledgeable as you can about HPV and find a caring physician that understands the physical and emotional toll that this diagnosis can bring.
 
Arm yourself with the facts:

  • 80% of women will have acquired a genital HPV infection by the age of 50.
  • There are over 100 types of HPV, and 30 that are primarily associated with sexual transmission some of which cause genital warts. Contracting¬† HPV is contracting a virus.
  • HPV can remain in the body for weeks, months or years before there are any symptoms. So, a recent diagnosis does not mean that a partner has been unfaithful.
  • While the medical risks exist and need to be addressed, for most people HPV is a harmless infection that usually clears up on its own.
  • There are very few cases of “high-risk” where HPV will lead to cervical cancer, or other cancers such as anal, rectal, penis, vagina and vulva. But that’s why it’s important to see a physician who specializes in HPV.
  • A couple that is sexually intimate with only each other will not pass the same virus back and forth. When the infection goes away, the immune system will recognize and fight off that infection. However, since there are so many types, you will not be immune to another type. That is why it is important to stay in a monogamous relationship.

 
 
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Dr. Abbadessa is board certified by the AOA and is a member of the Missouri Association Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons | St. Louis Metropolitan Medical Society | Missouri State Medical Association

 

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