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Old 04-16-2012, 04:38 PM   #2
roisindubh roisindubh is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Sanford, ME, USA
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Re: What do doctors tell men about HPV? Please help!

First: Your gyno said your cervix was beautiful and the cells were normal. For me, that meant the cells weren't cancerous, but I still had high-risk HPV. Did yours specify that you did or did not have this? Also, it is not *always* cleared by the immune system, thus the danger of cancers. So, yes, he has a right to have a freak out not only on his own behalf but on the behalf of whoever he sleeps with after you.

I'm not a male, so it's hard to say what a man would be told. However, no doctor is going to make this sound "disgusting." Very likely what he will be told is exactly what you were -- what HPV is, how it effects the body, that it RARELY results in complications for men, and how very, very common it is.

However, it is true that it's very common and with the number of people he had been with he may have been exposed. This also means that he could be carrying a strain different to your own and could in turn reinfect you. The HPV vaccines only protect against the 4 most common strains - 2 low-risk, and 2 high-risk. There are over 100 strains.

I take it upon myself as a responsibility to inform my future partners. I don't understand whatsoever this opinion of doctors that there's no need to inform a partner of HPV, when much is still unknown about it and the effects it can have on men and women alike. It actually infuriates me that you would be advised in such a manner, and that this is common. IMO, your friend was perfectly justified in telling this man that he may have HPV, whether or not it has an effect on his body.

I was even recently asked by a medical professional why I felt I had to "have the talk" with my future partners, and I put it to her this way: Whether or not the HPV could have an effect on a man I sleep with, he has a right to know that this may be passed on to him and to make a decision for himself and his own body as to what to do with that information. He also has a right to have that information to pass along to other women with whom he may sleep with in the future, women for whom this would likely have an effect, women for whom may not know what HPV is either and wouldn't know to get checked regularly. Perhaps if some woman had informed my ex that she had high-risk HPV before sleeping with him, he could have informed me and I wouldn't have contracted it.